How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
Introduction - p.3 Chapter One: Campaign Basics - p.7
What is a campaign? What is the difference between campaigning and raising awareness? Form and coordinate a campaign group Understand the journey of an activist
Chapter Two: Developing a Campaign Strategy - p.20
Establish your mission statement Set yourself winnable goals Access if your goals are SMART Utilise Campaign Mapping Understand the strengths and weaknesses of your campaign Internal and External Support
Chapter Three: Campaign Communication - p.36
Engage your target audience, the public. Write and Deliver a successful speech
Chapter Four: Campaign Marketing – p.53
The importance of marketing Marketing theory – Principles of Marketing and Campaign Marketing What’s in a word? Framing the Argument This chapter will then enable you to: Put the theory into practise Analyse successful marketing
Chapter Five: Utilising the Media - p.69
Develop a media strategy Understand how to use the local, regional and national media to your advantage Understand the value of News Construct a press release
Chapter Six: Organising Events – p.82
Coordinate a successful event An Action Day Hosting a debate Organising a March, Demonstration or Rally Manage campaign stunts Lobby Officials Effective Petitioning Understand the law
Utilising political parties by Morys Ireland - p.110 Conclusion - p.113
How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
“Be the change you want to see in the world” Mahatma Ghandi
The inspiration for this book has slowly matured during my past four years coordinating campaigns and working alongside campaigning organisations, both during and after my time at University. Many believe that activism and campaigning are the soul preserve of the young and the militant, that to be an activist you have to hold far-fetched notions or buy into political dogma. Nothing could be further from the truth. During the past four years I have worked with a wide variety of campaigners, with a wide variety of aims. From student groups fighting against increasing fees, or for fair trade status to wider groups calling for an end to war, to defend human rights, to protect the environment or to safeguard the weak. All of these people share something, it isn’t their aim, nor is it their political persuasion. It isn’t their lifestyle or their fashion sense, it’s not a desire to be different or to stand apart from society, but rather it is their desire for change, real, positive change. It is the fact that they could identify something wrong in their world and they took the conscious decision to do something about it. Young and old, student and lecturer, college pupil and senior citizen all understand that something can be done and all stand together to achieve that aim. Many people believe that campaigning is not suitable for everyone and that it is simply something that comes naturally to some activists and that some campaign as a chosen way of life or even as a hobby. Once more nothing could be further from the truth, each campaigner has their own unique story of how they became involved in campaigning and the journey this has taken them on. I myself had little intention of ever getting involved in activism or campaigning. Indeed it was a miserable, cold night outside the Students’ Union building where I first met Ryan Cloke a student who had recently helped establish a student campaigning society, Portsmouth Socialist Students. It was by sheer chance that I took a leaflet from Ryan and then attended his first meeting. It was at this moment I that started my journey into the world of campaigning. Over the next three years we coordinated a broad range of campaigns for change both on a local and regional level, but with a national and international focus. These actions started small, first we attended local debates and won before we then started to build our own campaigns, first with a small group of supporters and later forming coalitions with other small student and non-student groups. We organised boycotts of unethical products from our campus, worked to raise awareness of the humanitarian crisis in Palestine, and organised a grass roots student led campaign against increasing tuition fees. We, along with an entire new generation of campaigners, also found ourselves involved in national campaigns such as marching though London calling for an end to the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq or in cities such as Barking campaigning against the rise of fascism. These years not only taught us valuable lessons in campaigning skills but also 3
if we all decided to look away and busy ourselves with our own lives? Whilst this book is written with a clear aim of guiding you to a campaign victory it is not simply the success of a campaign. The reason for this is as the Holocaust museum in Washington DC states: “Thou shalt not be a victim. if
Robert Fisk. We ended our years as students and our journey as student campaigners by finding ourselves in the occupied territories of Palestine attempting to discover what life is truly like for people on both sides of the conflict so we in turn could better understand and therefore better communicate their plight to people back home. nor was it the Nazis that her mother remembered most vividly. If the German people. I certainly did not know on that cold. The fact is that once you realise that you can effect change. or proposed motorways. What if we didn’t speak out? What would happen if we all fell silent. Thou shalt not be a perpetrator. “The Great War For Civilisation” . ethical and social justice organisations. those concentrating on local issues such as closing hospitals. it was not the camps. the daughter of a Holocaust survivor. do they have a chance? If not what about smaller groups. one more victim of the Nazi persecution. After University I have worked at that very same Students’ Union where I have written and delivered campaign training to student campaigners as well as coordinated local and regional campaigns on issues such as Free Education. just looking. either by the media or the apathetic bystander. why bother? Are two or twenty. will they be able to bring troops home? For that matter what about the thousands who marched through London to petition the government to address climate change. As campaigners there is one question that we shall always be asked. (2 Oct 2006)
. HarperPerennial. but the very act of standing up and speaking out which must be judged. and once you realise that change is needed you are in no position to stop campaigning. “When the train pulled into a station my mother saw these German women looking at the prisoners. or two hundred or even two thousand people marching. demonstrating or signing petitions on a drizzly Saturday afternoon really going to stop a war.” 1It was the sight of these civilian women and how they silently watched the train go that her mother found the most disturbing. As Hass states. The most vivid example of this can be found in the work of journalist Robert Fisk. thou shalt not be a bystander”. Yet the point remains. However. Hass wrote that in 1944 her mother found herself on a train heading for the Polish concentration camps. what chance do they have? I must answer that question with a thought of my own. miserable night outside the Union that I would dedicate the next few years of my life to campaigns and would eventually write a book on the subject but that just perfectly demonstrates the journey you can take if only you’re prepared to seize your opportunities. Above all.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change provided us with an opportunity to research and understand some of the political. dark. living in a Nazi state with its secret police and its state controlled propaganda can be accused of guilt for staying silent during one of the worst atrocities in history then what does that say about us if we can stay silent about an injustice in our free society? Of course to claim that the actions of any current government are comparable to the crimes of the Holocaust would be a distortion of historical fact. In 2002 Fisk interviewed Amira Hass.
indeed the need for positive campaigning. Local elderly residents have
. to tackle your injustice. Many seasoned or veteran campaigners may like to recall the golden days of activism and campaigns. This is an important consideration for any campaign group. or defend and they can be clear about what they are campaigning against but the idea of an alternative can often allude them and this can clearly be seen by the messages they carry and the way they campaign. it is about the local concerns. but to stand up for your beliefs. The single most important lesson that I have gleaned both from my experiences and through the people I have worked with is the need to think globally but act locally. they stood together for the sake of their conscience and so that history would know that they stood against a war. It is about injustices that affect an entire community as well as people’s everyday lives.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change we can choose to become bystanders. “anti-capitalist” or “anti-fascist”. The world is clearly not a perfect place. This book aims to empower those people. they recall the peace marches of the 1960’s and 1970’s. the freedom to stand up without being shot down. to call for human rights. If we do this we become the guilty and then we are no better then those who stood on the rail side watching the doomed depart for the gas chambers. In modern Britain we have the freedom of speech. because they do not know that the power to be positive agents for change lies in their own hands. At the time of writing there are several such campaigns in my hometown of Portsmouth. the freedom to shout out without being locked up. if we choose to watch and choose to stay silent then we must also take responsibility for whatever our inaction may bring. or the anti-poll tax campaigns of the 1980’s. and that this is the time to be counted as someone who refuses to stay silent. just because our history is strong does not mean we are any weaker in comparison. The media isn’t short of images of people who are “anti-war”. Similarly during the G8 summit at Gleneagles in 2007 thousands of people flocked to Scotland to campaign against global injustices. but there are people who are prepared to stand up and call for change. We are of course not short of causes in today’s world. but it is only the minority of people who know what they are actually for. The challenge faced by many thousands of potential campaigners who stand against these injustices is that they do not know what they are campaigning for. Indeed this country has a proud campaigning history and it is because of our history of holding the powerful to account that we have national institutions and achievements such as the National Health Service. yet many people choose to say nothing. to show them that now is not the time to sit silently. the need to show that real alternatives do exist and the importance of showing what you are for as well as what you are against is an important topic that I will be discussing in-depth in later chapters of this book. for world leaders to defend the weak and aid the suffering. However. They may know what they are trying to protect. In 2003 between two and three million people ranging from war veterans to school children marched together on the streets of London. They stay silent because they do not know what they can do. Campaigning is not only about the global issues.
This theory has been built up over the past few years both through my work and affiliation to many organisations. effort and patience. if you are prepared to refuse to fall to disillusionment and are prepared to motivate and inspire people even when your own confidence is shaking then you will achieve your campaign goal and this book will guide you through it all. It would be wrong for me to suggest that campaigning is an easy activity. but to know and to be silent is an unacceptable crime. both of which are vital to the community. This will be achieved by guiding you though six key steps of campaigning theory. Ignorance and silence may go hand in hand. As citizens we have great power. from the moment you identify an injustice or something you want to change. be prepared to be counted for what you believe to be right. However. change. regardless of how big or small your goal may be. draw together from their experiences as well as my own. they did not see themselves as the sort of people who would brandish placards. Reaching your campaign goal may require a lot of time. Throughout this book you will hear from experienced campaigners who herald from a board range of organisations and who have a vast array of views and just as varied goals. I have analysed their ethos and values and noted their best practises in order to bring you a comprehensive yet straightforward and engaging guide to coordinating your campaign. From the man who used his life experiences to establish and lead a network for humanitarian justice to the woman who waged a one person war against plastic bags in her town. and the conscience of our community. and won. to the moment you establish and coordinate your campaign. So stand up. Before these closures were proposed none of these people had any campaign experience.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change formed campaign groups to lobby their MP’s and to whip up local support in order to save a local fire station and a hospital. It is my sincerest hope that this book can act as your guide.
. indeed one of the reasons I am now in a position to write this book is due to the lessons I have learnt from my mistakes as well as my successes. write to MP’s or argue their cause on national television. We must be the people who are prepared to lead others and change our world. if you set your mind upon a specific goal and are prepared to work towards it. if you seriously plan your campaign. right up until you achieve your goal. to understand and to judge. positive change. and be prepared to make a real difference. be prepared to shout out against injustices at the top of your voice. From the environmentalists who succeeded in achieving fair trade status for their local institution to the student group who brought their local politicians to account. to reason. positive. Their inspirational testimonies will demonstrate that the theory. do not only sound feasible on paper but actually work to achieve real. Therefore at times we must also be the conscience of the nation. and yet they have done all of those things and much more because they knew it was the right thing to do. to ask why and to work for real. we have the power to think. As campaigners and as agents for change it is our responsibility to question.
completely dependent upon the circumstances in which you find yourself. standing against a political decision. and the goal of your campaign can be highly personal. nor is it the soul intellectual property of any political persuasion. positive change. indeed your own goals. An activist is simply someone who chooses to become an advocate and an agent of change. Indeed. There are however some constants. to saving a hospital.” Margaret Mead
This chapter will ask: • What is a campaign? • What is the difference between campaigning and raising awareness? This chapter will enable you to: • Form and coordinate a campaign group • Understand the journey of an activist What is a campaign and who is an activist?
The words campaign and activist are words that can instantly conjure up images of scruffy students wielding homemade placards clothed in well worn Che Guevara t-shirts. factors which hold true regardless of your
. with a set goal and a set strategy it is the process through which an activist can achieve the aim of real. Whilst it would be untrue to suggest these people do not exist they certainly don’t have the monopoly over the phrases. Both phrases can be defined in a single word: Change. There are of course a wide variety of activists and a plethora of campaigns with a range of goals from affecting political change. Being an activist does not entail political affiliation. Before this book takes you on to the first step of coordinating an effective campaign it is essential that we put these stereotypes to bed and clearly define what a campaign is and who can be regarded as an activist. to make a difference.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
Chapter One: Campaign Basics
“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world. Similarly the word campaign can simply be defined as a coordinated effort by a team of campaigners. somebody who recognises an injustice or a problem in the world or in their local community and resolves themselves to play a part in the solution. to advocating environmental change. it isn’t a lifestyle choice or a fashion statement it is the conscious choice to change. it is the only that that ever has.
It’s vitally important not to become disillusioned early on if vast throngs of people don’t instantly appear to support your cause. If so you could consider setting up a local branch or helping to build upon what already exists. such as the closure of a hospital. indeed it can be a vital activity within your campaign but it is not a campaign objective onto itself.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change goals such as the need for a strategy. clearly this is a highly personal choice and will also be dependent on your circumstances. the need for effective organisation. These are the factors which the following chapters will seek to cover.
The difference between campaigning and raising awareness?
If you ever ask an activist what is the aim of their campaign they will invariably answer “to raise awareness of …” before talking about their cause. some people seek out injustices while others have injustice thrust upon them. or you are perhaps the first to identify the injustice then the task of founding a group may fall to you.uk/)
. Today the organisation has over 1. but remember a small group of people can achieve great things. Within months Benenson had turned his publicity stunt into a movement and founded Amnesty International. If you’re not aiming to change something then you’re not campaigning. The first thing for you to consider is. For proof of this you need look no further then Amnesty International.amnesty. merely a means to achieving an end. and the goals you set yourself. the need to put your campaign on the map and in the local consciousness. perhaps you will have only one or two friends and supporters to begin with. or even national level? If it is a national or international concern then there is a strong chance that there may already be an organisation or large campaigning group for you to join. Simply put raising awareness is not a campaign.
Forming a campaign group
The start of everybody’s journey into campaigning is different. your background. does your campaign centre around a local issue. If no such group exists. Your own journey is going to depend entirely on the person you are. In 1961 British lawyer Peter Benneson penned an article entitled “The forgotten prisoners” calling for the freedom of political prisoners in Portugal. UK 2005 (http://www. The first step is choosing your cause. It is inevitable that any group you establish will start small. Since 1961 the organisation has lobbied governments and the
Amnesty international.org. these are the black holes in your knowledge which this book will fill. A campaign is a coordinated effort for a tangible objective: change.8 million members in 150 countries across the globe2. Building an effective campaign group can take time. but it will grow as you progress with your campaign. This is not to say that raising awareness is not a worthwhile exercise. a proposed motorway or even a local election? Or alternatively does your campaign stretch across a regional. enabling you to coordinate your campaign to its full potential to ensure your swiftly achieve your goal.
but they lack leadership or any avenue to channel their anger. Whilst the notion of apathy is itself a debatable term we should define it here as being “indolent of mind”. someone who is unaware and disinclined to join a campaign group. The initial step is the experience someone has of that leisure centre and their understanding of the role it plays in the local community. One man started all this.
. If your campaign focuses on a leisure centre or a hospital then who else has used these facilities and recognises its importance? Or if your campaign is centred on a new construction site. Who’s to say your group couldn’t be just as successful?
If you can talk to just six people. As your campaign grows and as you start recruiting new activists you will have to instil this sense of injustice by sharing your experience.” 1. people who share the same experience as you and who feel the same sense of injustice. 2. Experience The first step is experience. simply by identifying an injustice and choosing to do something about it. something that occurs or an understanding a person has of an event. In our leisure centre example it would be the sudden announcement that the local council are drawing up plans to close the centre and replace it with new homes. to being a campaigner. Ideally you’ll wish to recruit people who have reached this second stage. Who talk to six people … Who talk to six people … Who talk to six people … Who talk to six people … Who talk to six people … By the end you’ve reached … 279936 people The journey from apathy Before you consider the logistics of actually setting up a group it is important to consider how someone can go from being apathetic. such as a motorway. Injustice The next stage is the sense of injustice related to the experience. but there are four stages a person must go through before becoming an “activist. This will be addressed in more depth in the Campaign Communication chapter. It is reasonable to assume that we all start this way.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change United Nations to broker international human rights treaties and has secured the release of hundreds of political prisoners. For the sake of clarity we’ll use the example of a closing leisure centre. who else will be effected by it? At this stage people may be angry.
This is the final stage and is when somebody is deemed to be an “activist” or a campaigner. This person is responsible for the overall coordination of the committee. This progression is often best described as an “apathy staircase”3. Once people have shared experiences. •
Every campaign group should have a central committee who fill the following roles. When you first establish your group it is likely that you will only have enough activists to form a small committee. However. This progression is important to consider from the outset.
Structure of a new group Whilst every campaign group is slightly different there are a few set roles that have to be filled if it is to be coordinated effectively. When establishing a group this is the stage you will start off at. Chairman The chairman is usually the founder of the group but this can also be an elected position. they can take action. it is not wise to place total responsibility into the hands
The Apathy Staircase. as your campaign grows and attracts new members the structure of your group should grow accordingly to ensure that the campaign can be effectively managed. 2008
. as you will have to recognise where your potential activists are on this scale and what you’ll have to do to take them the rest of the way. However. you should consider adding more committee positions as the campaign grows and the amount of activists grows accordingly. to being an “activist.” It is highly likely that you will have gone through this process yourself if you are considering joining or actively establishing a campaign group. better motivated and therefore more likely to achieve their goals. National Union of Students.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change 3. taking them from being “apathetic”. A well managed group of activists are better organised. as it represents four steps that a person will travel. At this stage an organisation is formed which allows people who have been through the previous stages to work together to coordinate their efforts 4. Organisation The penultimate step provides the infrastructure and leadership people need if they are to transform their sense of injustice and anger into some practical. Action Action is the final outcome of the previous steps. This is not a definitive list. positive action. have a shared sense of injustice and have come together in a group or organisation they can start to do something about it. These central roles should be run by a small committee who form the administrative hub of the group.
but fundamentally important roles of the campaign team. you may wish to add a student element to your campaign team if you’re based in an area with a large University.
Treasurer The treasurer has one of the more challenging.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change of one individual. On a day-to-day basis the chairman chairs meetings of the committee and also acts as the group’s main representative to external bodies such as the media. This will involve collecting contact details from activists who join your group. You may wish to consider adding an event coordinator. They may also manage any websites or newsletters run by the campaign group. not only between the committee and campaigners but also between the group and external bodies such as the media. Secretary The secretary’s main responsibility is to coordinate the committee and wider group meetings. for coordinating all communication. or even a social secretary who may be responsible for keeping team moral high. it is more effective to run your group democratically. this will be elaborated later. The media coordinator takes responsibility. As your campaign committee grow it may start to look like this:
. This can be significant to ensure activists do not become disillusioned over time. Media Coordinator The media coordinator plays a vital role and may take the lead in organising a media strategy or managing a marketing team. ensuring that all activists are kept informed of developments. The secretary will take minutes to ensure any decisions made are recorded and may organise an up to date contact list of campaigners and wider contacts. responsibility for the groups’ finances. If your campaign is multi-faceted then you may wish to delegate specific areas of it to smaller teams who feed up to the central committee. This may include organising fund raising drives and ensuring that budgets are created and upheld when organising campaign events and activities. The Secretary plays an integral role in coordinating communication between members. both of which are described in later chapters. potentially along with the secretary. For example.
It also provides a sound model for transparent accountability and democracy. Democracy Democracy should be the word on every activist’s lips if they were asked to describe the core values of your campaign group. marches or action days rather than for the organisational meetings. which should be two fundamental values of your campaign group as well as being key mechanisms for its management. such as a fundraising team and a media team. Ideally this structure will allow the activists to dedicate their efforts according to their strengths. Under these teams you have volunteers. these activists are not assigned to specific areas but are involved in logistically organising various events and actions the campaign group may undertake. Under these you have general activists and supporters who may make up the bulk of your support base but may also only turn up on the day of rallies. These teams work with their specified committee member who reports back at campaign meetings.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
As your campaign grows and your structure grows to accommodate it you may aim for a structure like this:
In this model you have specific teams of activists dedicated to activities within the group. It is integral to the effectiveness of the campaign that it is run along democratic lines. This means that decisions are made by committee and member votes whilst
that they have a stake in the organisation and that it is an organisation that they can be proud of then they will feel empowered. This is vital to ensure people do not become disillusioned over time and start to drop out. then their loyalty and commitment will stay high meaning that they will be motivated and can become amazing agents of change. If your activists feel that they have a say. if you ignore their opinions then they will vote with their feet! Perhaps the most important reason why you should run a completely democratic campaign group is to ensure your activists have a strong sense of ownership over the campaign. This in turn leads to a sense of disenfranchisement and apathy. especially when the need for new activists and supporters is at its highest. This is commonly known as a bottom up style of management. communication methods. As decision making in a government is concentrated at the highest levels regular citizens do not feel any control or ownership over the system. This can be achieved by having open campaign meetings which all activists are invited to attend. it is therefore crucial that you address the issue of “barriers to participation” at the earliest stage of your campaign. For a classic example of a top down approach you need look no further then the national and local government. If you constantly hold your meetings late at night in a local pub these meetings will not be accessible to parents who have children to care for. The best example is meeting times. one need only research the last general election turn out figures to see proof of this. publicity or social events. In order to ensure that your group is run on democratic lines it is important to regularly consult your activists. If they feel empowered and therefore feel that they have a degree of control over the campaign. Regularly consulting your activists and your supporters is the only way to ensure you are running your campaign the right way.
Barriers to participation In order for your campaign to succeed you are going to have to look for support from across the community. Try and remove any potential barriers by: • • • • Moving your meeting times and venues regularly Choosing not to meet in a bar or predominantly alcoholic venue Using a wide variety of methods to communicate with members Ensuring that all the events you hold are easily accessible
. A barrier to participation is simply a factor that prevents someone from taking part in your campaign. these can occur at a variety of levels such as meetings.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change committee positions are also fully elected. religious groups who can not consume alcohol or teetotallers. you will therefore deprive yourself of a lot of potential activists.
• General meetings General meetings are the staple. then it is advisable to hold smaller regular meetings where administrative matters can be discussed and strategy can be debated before being presented to the rest of the campaign group at general meetings. • Committee meetings If you have an elected committee or a central core of campaign coordinators. Regardless of whether these meetings are weekly. It is important to hold these meetings prior to general meetings to give committee members the opportunity to report any developments to the activists. such as a media team. however these are very dependent on the size of your group and the longevity your campaign. • Team meetings Depending on the structure of your campaign group you may delegate specific roles to a team of activists. The actions of these meetings can then
. This meeting gives the committee or the main organisers an opportunity to communicate and consult with members regarding new developments. If your campaign group is small. fortnightly or monthly the regular meetings of your new campaign group will be the mechanism by which your activists come together and work on the campaign. This may entail inviting guest speakers who are relevant to the topic or by showing films. news or upcoming events. with their committee member to lead and organise their area of the campaign. It is also important to increase the frequency of these meetings in the run up to large events such as a debate. a recruitment drive or an action week. Your regular meetings may aim: • • • • • • To discuss and generate campaign ideas To agree decision making To communicate with your members and your committee To monitor and evaluate the progress of your campaign To carry out administrative duties To organise or evaluate a specific event
There are generally four types of meeting which a campaign group will regularly hold.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
Organising your Campaign group
Meetings Whilst every campaign group may choose to organise itself differently the main format by which you will coordinate your activists is by holding regular meetings. regular meeting open to all activists and supporters. If so it is important that this team meet regularly. it is wise only holding these sort of meetings until you have enough activists for specific teams or an elected committee. These are the meetings that may be used for planning large events or for discussing and debating strategy and goals. It is often wise to vary these meetings to keep them interesting for your activists.
inaugural meeting of your campaign group is going to have to inspire and motivate your new activists and so requires a significant level of thought and planning. this is especially integral if you are starting with a very small group as you are going to have to rely on each other to keep motivated to avoid becoming disillusioned before you 15
. Your main aims for the first meeting should be to bring your activists together. Conducting a meeting: agendas An agenda is a simple way to organise your meetings. Committee updates: A series of short reports from committee members detailing the progress of their campaign area Agenda items: Anything that has been agreed to be discussed at this meeting normally set by the secretary after consultation from committee and opportunity for input by activists. • Create a welcoming environment This is one of the golden rules you should bare in mind throughout your campaign. This sounds like a tall order but to succeed you need only remember a few simple points.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change be reported to the committee and in turn to the assembled activists at general meetings. • Annual General meetings
An AGM is a large open meeting scheduled once a year and is an opportunity for the committee to report the campaigns progress from across the year and to discuss and debate strategies for the year ahead. An agenda should include the following categories: • • • • • • • Apologies for absence: Anyone who should be present but could not be. This is also an opportunity to hold annual committee elections that should be organised by the secretary and the chairman. Date and time of next meeting. Running a campaign is not like running a company. Matters arising: This is where any actions decided in the previous meeting should be noted and reviewed to make sure they have been carried out. A large proportion of your first meeting should be spent getting the activists to know each other. Any other business: Open the meeting to the floor. it gives a clear guide for activists to follow and makes it easier for the secretary to record minutes.
Your first meeting The first. you’ll have to persuade them and if people are going to be working together with shared aims and values it certainly helps if they are also friends. people will not simply do what you tell them to do. to empower them and inspire them. Minutes from last meeting: Attached so they can be recognised as a fair and accurate record of the previous meeting. an opportunity for anyone to raise anything that has not already been discussed.
You want people to keep on coming to these meetings. and your campaign ideas. This gives people a sense of empowerment and inclusion. This links into the first point as you open this discussion up to the entire group. which turns their anger into action for change. It is important that you follow up your meeting with something like an e-mail outlining what has been agreed as well as the date and time of next meeting. small but effective methods of telling people you exist. This allows people to feel that they are actually doing something positive for the cause. • Excite your activists Make sure that your activists have something to be excited about rather then angry about. so use what you have sparingly and effectively. • Action Days
. Perhaps even tie in a small social event on the same day. If your campaign is against the closure of a local school. welcoming and encouraging everyone’s opinion. Assuming that you have started with a small group with a modest budget you are going to have to start with the simple. • Introduce your campaign ideas It is at this first meeting that you need to introduce yourself.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change develop into a larger group. You want your activists to leave your first meeting feeling that they are already building towards something positive and that they have joined the right group to achieve their aims. so don’t let them disappear after the first one!
A recruitment drive should be your number one priority if you are to build and develop your campaign group from a small core of activists to a large. Achieving this can be straightforward. Don’t simply stand in front of your group lecturing them. At this state you do not have the resources or manpower to mount a large marketing campaign. and get them to share their experiences and their thoughts for the campaign. if possible be creative. then target houses in that school’s catchment area. It is important for activists to feel that their opinion is worth something to the group and that their suggestions are considered. Depending on the nature of your campaign you should consider holding a small scale event. The trick is to focus your attention on people who have been affected by your cause or who are likely to share the same experiences as you. get your activists talking to each other. • Don’t let it end there Remember that meetings are not an end to themselves but rather a tool to achieving the eventual goal. effective organisation as previously described. such as an action day or a small demonstration. or at the very least ensure you have a variety of speakers. two vital factors you want to maintain to prevent disillusionment.
advertising your meetings and recruiting new members. where people will actually read it. More information on how to engage people during your action day can be found in the Campaign Communication chapter. collecting contact details. your central campaign team and your activists is the glue which will hold your campaign together. The most important aspect is to include your contact details and the date. It is fundamental that someone on your campaign team. • Website/Social networking sites
The Internet can be a cheap and effective way of reaching a vast amount of people in very little time. this way people will be able to find you which is far easier you searching for them. is delegated to build up a database of activists contact details including. More information on methods of attracting new members through campaign marketing can be found in Chapter 4. All you need is a few motivated activists armed with some leaflets and a petition who are ready to talk to as many strangers as possible! Often an action day will comprise of a few activists setting up a stall in a busy area. such as a high street. time and location of your next meeting. usually a secretary if you choose to appoint one. understand it and care. or more strategically at an affected area. such as outside a hospital that is soon to close. collect contact details and invite them to your next meeting.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
An action day is the cheapest and most effective way of engaging with the public.
Communicating with members
Day to day or week to week communication between yourself. It is essential that you keep all your activists informed of upcoming meetings. explain the cause. items to be discussed at that meeting and any events you may hold. • Poster Campaigns & letter drops
If your budget is small ensure that any posters or letters you print are used in the affected area. • • • Phone Numbers E-mail addresses Home address
. It is the activist’s job to engage the public. If any of your activists are savvy with computers then get them to create a website domain name and register it to a popular search engine.
This team should consider a wide variety of fundraising activities such as: • • • • • • Donations Newsletter On-line donation On-line shop Coffee Morning Social events such as film showings
. The danger comes if you start to become dependent on email as your only form of communication. Start small by holding meetings in accessible public venues or even at an activist’s house before considering fundraising activities. It’s important to research means of raising funds. it is simply a case of organising within your means. However. It is always worth delegating the roles of managing finance and fundraising to a specific campaign team. For example if you are campaigning on human rights or social justice issues then large multi-national organisations such as Amnesty International or War on Want may be all too pleased to lend support. Forms of communication may also include social networking sites and Internet forums. Try and limit emails to once a week. remember the barriers to participation it is quite possible that not all of your activists or potential activists have access to the Internet. print a large array of propaganda or plan any large scale activities.
Financing a campaign group can be one of the most challenging aspects of coordinating a campaign team and it’s a straight forward equation. • • A variety on this theme may be to send an E-Newsletter via email keeping your members fully up to date in an engaging fashion. ideally just before a meeting is due. without funds you can’t afford to book venues for large meetings. If you send them too frequently then someone can easily dispose of them in their “trash” box and will never hear from you again.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change Emails Sending mass messages by email is a swift and effective way of communicating large amounts of information to potentially hundreds of activists. regional or national organisations that share your aims and your goals? If so you should consider affiliating or forming a partnership to secure support. This is not to say that the situation is hopeless for a small fledging group. Never underestimate the power a persuasive letter can make for securing free campaign materials for your group. For example are there any larger.
it is therefore advisable to look for donations rather then membership fees. Of course before you can start to work with your new group to achieve your aims you’re going to have to work out what those aims really are. So far in this chapter we have covered the very basics of understanding campaigning enabling you to form structure and manage a fledgling campaign group. Often the organisation will give their activists membership cards. such as maintaining a head quarters building. You’re going to have to set yourselves achievable goals and develop a workable campaign strategy. subscriptions to their magazine or newsletter and other merchandise.
. this we must move onto Chapter Two. Chances are you’re not Amnesty international just yet so you are unlikely to be in a position to offer much to your activists. costs your group will not have. are your activists going to get value for money if you start charging them what is tantamount to a membership fee? Most large campaign organisations charge activists such fees or even regular subs but this is usually due to expensive overheads that national level organisations have to pay.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change Depending on the goals and the activities your campaign group will undertake you may wish to consider asking for small donations from activists when they join the group. Whilst this has potential to raise a modest amount of funding quite swiftly it is quite a risky strategy and you will have to ask your self.
Obviously the answer to this question will be very dependent on your original intention when setting up the group. such as designing a logo or devising a snappy campaign name. many of these shall be discussed later in this chapter. but the two primary questions to consider are. This second section will guide you through the crucial steps to give your group direction and specific goals. you need to decide if you can win. which is all well and good but unless you have a goal for your campaign team to strive for. analyse potential targets as well as understand the context in which your campaign exists. This chapter will enable you to prepare and draw up a campaign strategy. All too often new campaign groups will become bogged down debating the superficial things. Once your goals have been set and your campaign has been planned out. structure and manage your fledging campaign group. There are various factors to consider when deciding which goals are winnable.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
Chapter Two: Developing a Campaign Strategy “A goal without a plan is just a wish”
This chapter will enable you to: • Establish your mission statement • Set yourself winnable goals • Access if your goals are SMART • Utilise Campaign Mapping • Understand the strengths and weaknesses of your campaign • Internal and External Support
In the previous chapter we analysed how to establish. Before you set your goals. before you even give your campaign group a name. this strategy should act as your campaign constitution. a carefully constructed plan which considers the strengths and weaknesses of your campaign. with no real chance of success. For example a campaign group specifically established to save a closing hospital or oppose a motorway construction has a very specific mandate rather then a group established to promote national political change or to campaign for environmental causes. you will remain without direction. a document which you constantly refer back to throughout your campaigning activities to ensure that you maintain the direction you need to succeed.
Is your campaigner winnable?
This is perhaps the hardest question for a new campaign team to access. but it is the most important decision you have to make. before you develop a strategy to achieving them. is your campaign widely felt and is your campaign deeply felt? In other words will you be able to find people in your
How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change local community who will support you and do they currently care enough about the issue to act and work alongside you? Again this will depend on the impact your campaign has on the local community. if you set your goal too high and fail to achieve it then your activists will become disillusioned and will eventually give up. This is a tricky issue to navigate as you need to strike a balance. which is debated and decided upon at a high political level. had established connections with other organisations and other Universities in the region. perhaps in your very first meeting. had worked with the Students’ Union to bring the universities Vice Chancellor to a public debate on fees and had lobbied the Secretary of State for Innovation. The most important thing you need to do as a campaign leader is to deliver a victory. Within a few months of campaigning the activists has collected over a thousand signatures from local students. but you need to be able to hold up something your group have done to prove you are making a difference. When I was campaigning against growing student tuition fees I realised that a group of students in one University would struggle to have an impact on a national question. and so will be reluctant to act. the revolution is unlikely to be started by four students sitting in a Union bar. Groups such as People and Planet achieve this balance with great success. however you must continue to believe that you can make a real. human rights and the environment but sets its activists on smaller. winnable campaigns which can have a fantastic positive effect. over arching goal and then smaller goals which you can achieve on the way. you must raise awareness and you must use effective media and marketing techniques to make your cause both real and relevant. positive difference. measurable goals and these will be discussed later in this chapter. There are strategy tools which can be used to ensure you have specific. to truthfully and carefully consider how much your group can achieve. You must place these issues on people’s agenda. If however your campaign is based around a national or an international issue. then you must recognise that issues such as climate change or oppressive economic systems can not simply be tackled by a small group over night. such as a boycott of unethical goods or against a government’s foreign policy then people may struggle to work out how these issues are relevant to their lives. Green Peace or Socialist Students. Overall the group seeks to campaign around world poverty. but it remains straight forward. If your campaign is based locally and is focused on an issue such as a closing fire station then the chances are high that the issue will affect people’s day to day lives. such as lobbying organisations to stock fair trade products and organising various awareness raising activities such as Fair Trade Fashion shows. Having realised this it was essential that I gave the activists something real to work towards. For example if you have recently started a branch of People and Planet. each of which are organisations which have large national and international goals. As I discovered during my years as secretary in the Portsmouth Socialist Students society. they will be able to clearly identify how the issue is relevant to them and they will therefore be likely to act. It is essential. to prove that the activists are right to be investing their time in your campaign and to keep both your activists and yourself inspired and motivated. Universities and
. If this is the case then the task before you is slightly harder. it doesn’t matter how small. The best way to strike this balance is to have a large.
If this happens then you may end up campaigning simply for the sake of campaigning with no specific goal to work for. thereby providing a simple reference point for members and non members to understand your campaign. but may also outlines smaller victories along the way. The best way to achieve a similar synthesis of long and short term aims is to construct a mission statement which defines your overarching.
The first thing you should do to crystallise your aims. ambitions and values of a group. a method to achieving to a specific goal. and a yard stick for you to judge and evaluate the success of your campaign. A relatively small campaign team were able to achieve all of this because they were set realistic. winnable goals whilst forming beneficial partnerships with other organisations. a story covered on the national media. A Mission Statement can therefore be summarised by three key points: • • • Purpose Values Actions
Points to consider: Define what your campaign is Limited to exclude some ventures if they are not core to the campaign Distinguish the campaign from all others Define what the campaign aspires to be Broad enough to allow for creative growth Serve as framework to evaluate current activities Establish the core values of your campaign
Ensure it is stated clearly so that it can be understood by all members and potential members
. objectives and indeed your purpose as a group is to establish your mission statement.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change Skills. Its task is to embody the philosophies. Any group that operates without a mission statement runs the risk of lacking direction and purpose. To achieve this you will have to consider: • • The aims and objectives of your group The vision and values which are core to your group
What is a Mission Statement? A Mission statement defines in a paragraph or a sentence any entity's reason for existence. not an exercise in itself. goals. Campaigning is a means to an end. long term objective. A mission statement gives your activists a clearly defined cause to believe in.
How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
Examples of Mission statements
Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament: “CND campaigns non-violently to rid the world of nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction, and to create genuine security for future generations. CND opposes all nuclear and other weapons of mass destruction, their development, manufacture, testing, deployment and use or threatened use by any country.” This statement is both specific in the goals it lists as well as holding an overall aim to rid the world of nuclear weapons. Amnesty International: “Amnesty's mission is to undertake research and action focused on preventing and ending grave abuses of the rights to physical and mental integrity, freedom of conscience and expression, and freedom from discrimination--in the context of our work to promote all human rights, as articulated in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.” This Mission Statement is also clear in its holistic aim, that being to campaign against human rights abuses. Perhaps the most important aspect of this statement is how it defines the roles of the organization, undertaking research and action, before outlining the goals.
Creating your Mission Statement
1. Along with your committee write single words which best describe both the purpose and values of your campaign group. This process will work best if you are able to establish at least twenty of these words which should be associated to what your campaign is, and what you aspire it to be. 2. Once you have these key words attempt to divide them into groups. For example you may have group of words associated to democracy. This will help you to identify key themes which your committee believe to be fundamental.
How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change 3. Once these themes have been formed it should be possible for you to start creating sentences out of your key words. Once these sentences are starting to come together you will have the start of a mission statement. 4. Once you have this early draft it may be appropriate to consult your members with your ideas to form your final Mission statement.
Creating a Campaign Strategy
Once you have established your Mission statement and understand the purpose or cause of your campaign it is time to set yourself realistic goals and develop a strategy for achieving those goals. This is achieved by drafting your Campaign Strategy. Throughout this process you will be going thorough six steps which form the principles of action planning.
Principles of action planning:
Setting achievable goals
When setting your goals it is important to distinguish between long term goals – those that you ultimately wish to achieve and short term goals – smaller steps along the way.
Secure the support of your members, and the community.
Its simple really, democracy works. If you are going to achieve success you must first secure the support of your members. As stated in the previous chapter, the simplest way to achieve this is through constant consultation, both through general meetings and alternative means which may include internet forums. It is also important to consider the needs of potential members and barriers to participation they may find. You may also wish to explore links to other organisations in the wider community with whom you can work for mutual benefit.
Build your group along the way
It should always be your aim to constantly build and develop upon your membership. A large campaign group can achieve more then a small group. You should constantly be considering ways you can build your membership.
Escalate your activities over time
Start your campaign on the right footing with simple, small steps, if those prove to be a success start to build up the momentum gradually and sustain that success.
How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
Always take time to step back and objectively access how successful you are being in achieving your goals. Have your goals proved to be realistic? Are you on track to achieving them or do you need a change of direction?
Six Steps to Campaign planning.
In order to achieve these principles it is advisable to follow these six simple steps: 1. Brainstorm goals 2. Out-line the decision making process of your target This will require you to consider how decisions are made and which opportunities you have to influence them. If you are targeting your local council, attend council meetings prior to votes. If you are targeting a company consider which factors will influence their thinking, such as bad publicity or a decline in sales. 3. Power map decision makers and key influences within and without your group 4. Outline strategy for campaign growth 5. Develop a timeline 6. Evaluate your plan and your goals constantly
Setting Achievable goals
We have already discussed how you have to ensure the goals you set for your campaign are winnable, but to ensure that this is the case you should consider the following factors which make your goals, S.M.A.R.T goals? S M A R T Specific Measured Agreed Reachable Time bound Ensure your objectives are clearly defined. Your goal should be tangible; it should have the ability to be measured. All activists need to agree with this goal. The goal should be realistic and achievable You should be operating within an agreed time frame.
To determine if your goal is measurable. but be sure that every goal represents substantial progress. Specific reasons.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
Specific . "Coordinate a series of Action days. ask questions such as. Once you have identified your goals. abilities. a goal must represent an objective toward which you are both willing and able to work and take responsibility for. You can attain most any goal you set when you plan your steps wisely and establish a time frame that allows you to carry out those steps. A goal can be both high and realistic. Identify requirements and constraints. Establish a time frame. Goals that may have seemed far away and out of reach eventually move closer and become attainable." But a specific goal would state. To set a specific goal you must answer the six "W" questions: Who is involved? What do I want to accomplish? Identify a location.. This is where democracy not only becomes a guiding value. Realistic . you are the only one who can decide just how high your goal should be. Constantly consult your activists at general meetings and ensure that all of your activists and supporters have an opportunity to voice their opinions and any concerns they may have.How much? How many? How will I know when it is accomplished?
Agreed – It is important that your goals should be agreed upon. but because your campaign grows to match them. reach your target dates.Establish concrete criteria for measuring progress toward the attainment of each goal you set. When you measure your progress. You must access the attitudes. purpose or benefits of accomplishing the goal. "recruit new activists.
.To be realistic. and experience the exhilaration of achievement that spurs you on to continued effort required to reach your goal. not only by yourself and the Campaign committee but by all of your activists. skills. not because your goals shrink..
*Who: *What: *Where: *When: *Which: *Why:
EXAMPLE: A general goal would be... and if they are realistic and whether or not they can be achieved.A specific goal has a much greater chance of being accomplished than a general goal.."
Measurable . you must consider how. and financial capacity of your society to reach them. you stay on track. but an operational necessity. It is unreasonable to expect activists to invest their time and effort into achieving a goal they do not believe.
ultimate victory. motivate. you can then build on this and take the fight to the local government and the key decision makers. this demonstrates that the goals you set for your campaign should not be isolated examples but should be aspiration. When regarding members you must build your campaign around empowering them. organisation and time. If you have the members. as a campaign leader your task is not to order and expect results but to educate. your first goal may be to lobby or meet with the management. inspire and equip your activists. There are also two arrows on this diagram which demonstrate how these factors must be built upon.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
Timely . objectives. As I stated in the first chapter you must remember that a campaign organisation is not a business or a political party.
Campaign Models: The Four Pillars of Campaign Strategy
There are various theory models which demonstrate how a campaign strategy operates and the relationship between the factors.A goal should be grounded within a time frame. This model shows the four key pillars of a campaign strategy and how they are interconnected and overlap. you should be setting your campaigners winnable goals which they can achieve on their way to a greater. The pillars are members. yet no objectives to give them. thus empowering them to become effective agents of change. If you have objectives and set goals but members and thus no need to organise anyone then once again you will be working to no avail. with set goals and objectives which are clearly time bound. There is also an arrow extending from the objectives section. The key to success is to have well organised members. With no time frame tied to it there's no sense of urgency. If your goal is to raise campaign funds then “someday” is not an acceptable timeframe.
How can you empower them Aspirations Members Objectives
. You need to give yourselves clear and achievable deadlines that should be agreed to and stuck with. or methods to organise them then your campaign will be directionless and largely meaningless. Each of these pillars is dependent on the others and each is necessary if you are to achieve success. For example if you are striving to save a hospital.
The key example in this chapter has been democracy. these are also encompassed within your mission statement but are also of operational importance and must be considered throughout any actions you take or objectives you set. after all a campaign strategy is a strategy for direct. Underneath this vision you have values. the very goals which you set for your campaign and the actions which you take to achieve them. should be the highest priority of your campaign. The vision. This is not a value to pay lip service to but to utilise as an operational tool. which should be summarised in your Mission Statement. Following this the base of the triangle is comprised of your strategic objectives.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
Campaign Models Campaign Strategy Pyramid
This pyramid model demonstrates the importance and indeed the structure of your campaign strategy.
. It should be the statement by which you all stand and the message which you all proclaim. This should makeup the majority of your campaign strategy. concrete action and it is action which will eventually win your campaign. other examples may include activists empowerment or development.
A crucial factor to bear in mind throughout the strategy process is the role of you opponent. to call for fair trade or as a stand against fees you are working against someone’s interests. why does it need a campaign in the first place? Chances are if you’re campaigning against the closure of a leisure centre. a multi-national corporation or even a
. it could be an individual.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
Understanding the strengths and weaknesses of your campaign. a large organisation.
Your Opponent. why hasn’t it been achieved already. The most effective way of achieving this is to follow the diagram below:
This diagram demonstrates the four central components for evaluating your campaign strategy and how they are dependent upon each other. Access your strengths and how they can be used to overcome your weaknesses. a local business. to save a local wood.
When accessing your goals and your strategy it is important to consider the strengths and weaknesses of your campaign. After all if your campaign is such a worthy cause.
however it relies on the opponent organisation recognising your views as being legitimate whilst being prepared to work constructively with an organisation for mutual benefit. Damaging: Of course it is not always possible for you to have a constructive relationship with your opponent. Typically there are three relationships which a campaign group can have with their opponent organisation: • Constructive: A large organisation such as Fair Trade can often convince their opponent that the changes they are proposing will be constructive. but there is no doubt that you can be victorious.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change government. Throughout your campaign you have to consider the impact you will have on this opponent and the counter-force they may choose to use against you. it is simply a case of staying determined. At this stage two things may happen. ensuring that your activists do not become disillusioned over time and keeping to your strategy. This scenario is far more difficult then a constructive relationship. your opponent will start a counter campaign. Alternatively they may simply be underestimating your potential. the company will instantly consider your campaign a danger to their sales and therefore their profit. This notion of constructive engagement and positive campaigning is addressed in greater detail in Chapter 4: Campaign Marketing. The organisation will also erect far more barriers to your campaign such as refusing to meet with you. nor will they construct any barriers to stop you. This false sense of security can be an advantage as your opponent will not bother with any counter measures. When this approach is adopted your potential opponent will construct far fewer barriers to block your success. which may include various barriers they can erect to impede your progress. This technique turns your opponent into an opportunity. especially if your agenda is seemingly irreconcilable. whilst if they are a local government or a University which internally adopts fair trade products they could benefit from good publicity. For example. which often means an organisation or a corporation will attempt to run a media campaign to boost its image. If they are a company then adopting fair trade products can be a useful marketing tool which will help drive up sales.
The worst case scenario is simply that you opponent will ignore your campaign altogether. or simply keep the pressure up for longer then their counter-campaign can manage. This is going to be completely dependent on how they perceive you. If
. If this is the scenario then you will either have to cause them more potential damage then they can sustain. Another example may be an environmental lobby group who can provide expertise which may benefit a company by cutting overhead costs or from the using a “green” status as a marketing tool. This may be because they do not recognise that you can benefit or threaten them in anyway and therefore cannot make an impact. if you are campaigning against the use of child labour in the clothing industry and start protesting outside the store of a large national firm which uses such labour. If this is the case then the opponent may view your campaign as something which could seriously damage them.
more information on lobbying officials can be found in the final theory section. For this you will have to develop a Campaign Map.
What resources do you have at your disposal?
This not only includes financial resources.
What is already working well in this area? What related strengths do that reveal?
This is where historical information is becomes paramount. Once your have set your sights on an opponent it is important to consider how they can be reached and what activists will effect them. For example if you are campaigning to save a closing leisure centre. This is where the constant need for self evaluation remains crucial. The easiest way to start your action plan is to create a map of your ambitions and the key factors which need to be considered. but equipment your activists own and the activists themselves. Do they have any specialist skills? Do they have any connections? It may sound clichéd but your campaigners are your most important resource. Alternatively. abilities and support you can get from larger organisations which may include affiliations. have there been any similar campaigns in your area? If so were they successful and could you work with that campaign team?
The matrix of characters
. The most straight forward way to achieve this is to draw a mind map which considers the following factors:
Strengths internal to your Campaign:
Skills that your members may have What is unique about your society?
Strengths external to your Campaign:
The strengths. Allies you have in the local community.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change however they continue this policy then you may have to recognise that they are right to ignore you and you should reconsider your strategy. Chapter Six Coordinating your campaign.
Once you have set yourself these specific smart goals it is time to consider how these will be achieved.
but they also remembered that the Vice-Chancellor attended the student choir. political landscape. Will it mean 32
. when coordinating a student campaign against tuition fees a campaign team identified their Vice Chancellor as a key target for lobbying as it was with him that the power to affect change lay. and what the relationship between these factors is. • Stakeholders
An analysis of stakeholders is a strategy technique which is usually used by businesses or large corporations but can just as effectively transferred to campaigning. or alternatively what they may do against you. such as a retail assistant as obviously they have very little control over the company they work for. the local government. and elements of the local community. When considering how to reach these targets consider both formal and more informal methods. This not only includes yourself and your team but also your opposition and any other people who can wield some influence.
When accessing potential targets for your campaign it is essential to not only look at who holds the power but also who has the ability to affect change. which may include local politicians. For example there is very little point in targeting an employee of a company. It is essential that you work out who will be affected and who has an interest in your campaign as you can then consider how they can assist you.
In which environment does your campaign inhabit? This not only means the physical environment but also the economic.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change Here you must consider the various personalities involved in your campaign. business owners or even other campaign teams. They then identified the formal methods of lobbying and contacting such as the meetings he attended. For example. you have to target the top. other campaigning organisations you are working with. For example your stakeholders may include your activists. your opponent. In a business sense this may be shareholders or affiliated companies but in a campaigning sense it may be anyone who will be affected by your campaign or has an interest in the cause you are working for. and hopefully convince him to support the cause. For example if you are fighting against a proposed motorway then you must understand the impact this will have on your environment. informal opportunity to talk to. thus giving those students an ideal. You need to access where the power lies. It is the technique by which you must consider which individuals or groups have a stake in your campaign.
Remember. your role is not simply to educate but to act and it is here that you consider which actions you will take. and public debates. These may include demonstrations and protests. lobbying.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change more traffic then the roads can handle? Will local business be affected? Will scenic land be destroyed or will farmers lose their land? These are both arguments you can use to strengthen your case but also provide opportunities for recruitment.
These are the methods you will use to reach your targets. all of which are discussed in Chapter Six. petitioning and action days. There are far too many campaign groups which simply collect information and then disseminate it to their members. inspire and empower your activists and ultimately achieve your campaign goals. a campaign is about the action you take.
Campaign Map Diagram
Below is an example of how a campaign map should be set out and how it should grow:
. to influence your audience.
Cancer incidence and mortality are higher in people from less affluent and certain minority ethnic backgrounds.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
Example Campaign Strategy:
The strategy show below is from the Cancer Research UK website and clearly lays out the mission statement and the objectives of the organisation. We encourage the government to develop public health policy that supports our campaign aims. we commission qualitative research to check our resources and messages are appropriate for our target audiences. We encourage local professionals to include cancer prevention initiatives in their work. training and resources to support their activities. This includes an overarching objective and also specific areas they will target.
More specifically we are looking at:
tobacco overweight and obesity unhealthy diets physical inactivity UV radiation national screening programs symptom awareness • genetic risk Target audience
There are large social class and ethnic inequalities in cancer (and in health in general). The Reduce the Risk campaign therefore targets audiences taken from social classes C2DE and certain ethnic minority groups. In addition.
Cancer Research UK: Campaign strategy
Reduce the Risk is a five year campaign run by Cancer Research UK
Aims and objectives
The Reduce the Risk campaign aims to:
• • •
Raise public awareness of the avoidable risks of cancer and the importance of early detection Address inequalities in cancer information Establish Cancer Research UK as a leading supporter of UK research into cancer prevention and risk.
• • • • • • •
Key campaign elements
Reduce the Risk is an integrated public health campaign built around the following key elements: Public communication A high profile intensive press and PR program forms the basis of campaign activity. Support for professionals Support from professionals working at a local level is key to the success of the Reduce the Risk campaign. We also provide relevant information. National annual tracking surveys (BMRB) monitor the impact and effectiveness of the campaign. The strategy also details the steps they will take to achieve these goals. To support press and PR messages we also distribute public information resources to key audiences. Research Reduce the Risk is a research based campaign. Surveys also provide angles and statistics for press stories. Public policy The Reduce the Risk team works closely with Cancer Research UK’s Public Affairs team.
How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
This chapter will enable you carefully consider your campaign. The following chapter focuses on Campaign Communication. The strategy that you and your members create should be the foundation stone of your campaign. to develop a strategy to achieve those goals as well as considering the role of your opponent. With a well structured strategy comes a well coordinated campaign. to set yourself winnable short and long term goals. It is integral that you form your goals and your strategy before naming a group and so I have left this section until Chapter Four: Campaign Marketing. At the start of this chapter I commented on how campaigners can become lost in debating superficial elements of the campaign such as the name of a group or a logo. Once you have your cause. your goals and your strategy it is time to put them into effect with concrete action.
. it is the document which you can use to gauge your success and constantly evaluate your campaign. and will enable you to take your goals and effectively communicate them to the public. to access how much you can achieve.
Instances may include: •
Speaking at a rally or March. Secondly you will need to communicate your goals. the public. Indeed. Whether your campaign is calling for fair trade. clearly and coherently is vital for three reasons. Of course if you expect people to stand around outside for a few hours at a time you’re going to have to motivate and inspire them. However. and in the end the communicator will be confronted with the old problem. there are no two words better suited to turning the average person’s mind to mush than the phrase “public speaking”. at speed. an end to fees or to save a closing leisure centre. it is highly likely you are going to want a large group of people to form together outside in that classic display of defiance and support. other wise you’re left with a 36
.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
Chapter Three: Campaign Communication
“The newest computer can merely compound. through effective lobbying.” Edward. of what to say and how to say it.Murrow
This chapter will enable you to:
Engage your target audience. inspired and truly believe they can make a difference. your values and your message to the general public. you’ve set your goals and you’re armed with your campaign strategy. the oldest problem in the relations between human beings. especially in front of a large audience. Being able to communicate effectively.
Public Speaking: Talks and Speeches For many public speaking. you’ve formed a group. if your campaign is ever going to reach enough people to influence any real change then you’re going to have to be prepared to stand up and tell the world what you believe in. This chapter will introduce the key theory that will enable you to engage the public on a one-to-one basis and to write and deliver an effective speech. to the very people who will support your campaign both in body and with money.R. Finally. can be one of the most daunting aspects of running a campaign. and perhaps ultimately you have to clearly communicate your goals. At this point communication becomes the single most important factor that will either drive your campaign forward or sink it without a trace. to those who are in a position to effect change. Write and Deliver a successful speech
So you’ve found an issue you want to change. First you will need to ensure your activists and your potential activists are motivated.
This is a stalwart tactic of any campaign. You can only truly test the strength of your arguments and ideas when they are pitted against someone with the opposite view. and quite possible damp. or are put under scrutiny from a salvo of questions. Success requires organisation and prepared tactics.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change miserable. the willing or the ability to do much for your cause. however.
. Giving a rallying speech might not gear them up to storm Parliament. unless you want the ideas and the cause of your campaign to stall you’re going to need to argue your case convincingly. Hi-jacking a lecture on campus. • Being on a debate panel. group of people who don’t have the organisation. unless you want to look like the clipboard wielding salesman you’d cross the street to avoid your going to have to be prepared. Unless you keep your activists impassioned and enthusiastic then you are going to be faced with ever decreasing numbers as your campaign goes on. An “Action day stall”. They seem smaller and less important then the other examples but the week-to-week meetings you organise with your campaigners form the very lifeblood of your campaign. large or small. This is an extraordinarily effective way of getting the attention of a large group of people. This is the ideal way for you to introduce your ideas to a large amount of people. but it will keep their spirits up and their motivation focused. Taking a small group of activists and setting up stalls in town centres.
Meetings. or outside key buildings. Obviously. If you to be persuasive and if you want support your going to have to inspire and motivate. Whilst we would all wish the lecture room to be a hallowed bastion of education and enlightenment it is more realistic to say that you will have a very captive audience ranging from fifteen to sixty people who are prepared to listen to you intently in order to avoid their lecture.
A. mountain beast holds the key to success. You can’t simply ask some one if they want to sign a petition. Of course this doesn’t only apply to student campaigns. So here are a couple of tips to bear in mind… • •
Don’t just dive in. however your campaign won’t get anywhere without wider support. a “yes” or “no” style question is very likely to get you a “no” answer. G. not scare them away. alternatively ask for their contact details so you can continue the discussion by e-mail. Don’t go overboard with this.S = Go. Be proactive and approachable. make sure you have prepared how you’re going to communicate your campaign message to passers by. that small. If the person is being argumentative for the sake of it this essentially calls their bluff. you’ll appear patronising and people will become suspicious. attempting to relieve people of their short change or hoping to drum up members then you’re going to have to prepare an engaging sales pitch. This may well sound like a cliché but if you truly want people to understand and engage with your campaign then you’re going to have to leave the safe confines of the dingy pub or the meeting room and go out and talk to as many people as you can!
Engaging the Public one to one.T. Out.
If you are collecting signatures.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
Goats: A Campaigners Mascot
The noble goat. Talk to. Don’t get frustrated and don’t argue back! If someone seems like their about to start an argument stay calm and invite them to your next meeting. and you may well be able to convince your fellow campaigners in a meeting room that it will work. if 38
. You want to engage people.AT. just make sure you’re not looking militant and angry. In order to look approachable it is important to smile and be friendly. G. They won’t.S is the number one golden rule. Your campaign may well sound great on paper. Don’t sit behind a stall looking bored and wait for the public to come to you. Instead.O. but to the general public. Students. Some people are simply argumentative and will see you as a challenge. And.O.
This doesn’t mean you need to patronise or dumb down your speech. • Just as people can look to argue with you many others are shy. make sure you’ve done your reading! If possible have some key facts and statistics up your sleeve to add to your argument. Instead tell the person that you don’t know. It is important not to prejudge the people you meet. your way out of it. Don’t attempt to guess. So don’t just keep to the superficial and the basic. If you can’t answer a question. Just because people are not aware of an issue doesn’t mean they won’t care given the opportunity. alternatively they may just be waiting for you to start the conversation. or worse lie. Avoid using any abbreviations or “campaign jargon”.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change however they are passionate about the subject understanding their opinion can be invaluable. remember that not everyone is familiar with your campaign. Ensure you research one step further then you are going to be asked. For example the first time I collected signatures for a petition people would not sign as they has not head about my campaign on the news and so did not think I was genuine! It is your job as a campaigner to plug the black hole in people’s knowledge. They may not be keen to start a conversation but they may well take a leaflet. It is of course impossible for you to know everything but there are some things you can do to ensure you appear informed on your topic: • Focus on one or two key points. they won’t want to make eye contact and they won’t want to initiate a conversation.
Being Persuasive even if you don’t know all of the answers…. but you’ll look into it. Don’t let someone who is questioning you lead you off onto a tangent. Often a lack of knowledge will hold someone back from signing your petition or joining your campaign. stay focused on these points and keep reverting back to them. be honest. Tell the person about an upcoming meeting or ask if you can have their contact details so you can continue this discussion. you will lose all credibility if you’re found out to be lying. just avoid talking like this:
Remember to keep smiling and thank them for their time.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
“We must implement collectivism in the name of the proletariat in order to defy the counter-revolutionary bourgeois oligarchs. which often leaves activists scratching their heads.” This is the big question. It sounds like a small thing but people will remember you as the face of your campaign. After all if you don’t show it’s important to you why on earth should they make it important for them?
Some campaigners may be naturals when it comes to talking one on one with strangers.) • If someone stops to read a sign or pick up a leaflet.
As noble as your aims might be. Make sure that you keep watch on your activists and see who is successful. you will always be asked one question. (For a more in-depth look at the use of language in campaigning politics look towards the next chapter. Don’t start a pitch with. “I’m sorry to bother you” or end it with “sorry for taking up so much time”. If you have enough activists it is ideal to delegate roles in which they can succeed. keep talking to them to fill in the blanks. It is important that the person knows your cause is important to you and that you feel passionate about it. “Will it make any difference. if you offend them or appear unpleasant then so shall your campaign. unless you use plain. Similarly never apologise for what you are doing. or can lead to your campaigners becoming
. accessible English then you’re not going to engage. everyday. others may struggle finding themselves more comfortable to write your leaflets or articles. you’re not going to inspire and you’re certainly not going to motivate. thereby their confidence will grow and they’ll feel more ownership over the campaign.
would you like to sign. In meetings building up to action days. Have one person playing themselves on the street engaging people and get the other to fire as many questions at them as they can.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change disillusioned over time. I’ve got more information on this stall. which will inspire even the most apathetic soul to the cause it’s important to spend time perfecting your technique. Here is an example of a successful pitch: “Hello there. • Invited them to hear more. this might make a difference whilst doing nothing will achieve nothing.”
Exercise: As a group you need to ensure that you’re well read on your topic and make sure you’re well practised in reasoning and arguing your case.” This sentence has achieved several aims: • What you want the person to do • Your cause and in this case the target of your letter. If you have enough activists place them into pairs.
Preparing for your public: The Five Second Pitch
When it comes to any form of public speaking 10% of your time should be dedicated to the actual delivery whilst 90% should focus on preparing for it. This way you’ll be sure to have covered as many areas as possible. 2) Is the person your targeting in a position to effect change? 3) Do you have examples where a similar campaign has succeeded elsewhere? If all else fails then the one fall back answer should be: “One thing is for certain. It is therefore integral that you have answers for the following key questions: 1) What impact will your campaign have? Are you hoping to raise awareness. try some role-play exercises. show solidarity or trying to get someone to activity stop something? Consider your final goal. • A clear reason why the person is affected and should sign. You have to sound positive and remember that you need to get across the fundamental parts of your message in only a few seconds. In order to construct the ideal pitch.
. we’re asking people to sign this letter to the Vice Chancellor to stop the raising of tuition fees which will leave us all in thousands of pounds worth of debt.
have become lodged in the collective consciousness. The next stage demonstrates how. However this process works both ways.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change It is important that you focus on and emphasise accessible words that the person will instantly be able to associate with. these include: • • • • • Third World Climate Change Developing countries HIV/AIDS Immigration
If used well these words can get a vast amount of imagery. something most students should be more then familiar with. many phrases can be laden with negative connotations such as immigration. which. In this case the key words were fees and debt. throughout the four stages I will use the example of a campaign to save a local hospital. once you’ve hooked someone with your pitch you can engage them with your cause and involve them in your campaign.
. whilst climate change is an instantly recognisable phrase associated with impending disaster and the need for change. partly due to the mass media. ideas and injustices into the mind of someone in the space of a couple of seconds.
The Four steps of engaging the public
Your aim throughout should be to take the person you meet on the street through four key stages. There are a myriad of phrases.
continue to gently question so that they tell you more of their own opinion. “Have you ever used the local hospital?” and allow them to elaborate. Get them to tell you about their experience. for example if they have just told you that they have recently been treated at the hospital relate to this story with a story of you own or someone you know. Instead of talking at them listen to them. throwing meaningless facts and statistics at them.
2) Explore: Once you have your hook. Give them a petition/letter to sign so they can feel they have contributed and tell them about any up coming meetings. 4) Elevate: Once you have found and explored common ground and identified joint injustices start to introduce your campaign. Tell them that you share their opinion and that something can be done about it. If possible start with a question. 3) Empathise/Equalise: Once they have told you their story show that you emphasise by relating your cause to their story. This is a guaranteed way to instantly lose people. If possible ask for their contact details so you can add them to a mailing list. This way the dialogue will be working two ways and the person will have a sense of empowerment as their experience means something to you. If possible relate their opinion to your own story.
.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
1) Listen: It is all too easy to simply talk at people. you’ve seized their attention and you’ve got them talking start exploring the topic.
Just like engaging people on a one-to-one level it is important that you spend 90% of your time preparing your talk.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
Public Speaking: Preparing a talk:
When it comes to giving a speech. the contents of your talk. Unless you’re a true genius then you’re going to fall flat on your face.
This will hugely affect the contents and style of your talk. If you are using slides ensure that you use plenty of pictures. The Primary and Recency effects are vital to adult memory retention. • Adult learning
When giving a speech to post-university adults you must bare in mind key facts regarding how adults require and retain information. so ensure you start and end on key points. Depending on your audience you will have to vary your tone of voice. diagrams or videos in order to keep the attention of the audience. this means that people are most likely to remember the first thing and the last thing that you tell them. For example adults can generally hold their attention on one subject for twenty minutes whilst the attention span of a child or a student is a lot less. your method to engage an audience and ultimately your objective of the talk. or a short talk on a public platform it is important that you don’t just turn up on the day expecting to be the next Lenin. your body language. Repetition is a key tool for any speech writer. leaving people to question both you and your campaign.
. Bare this in mind and vary your style accordingly. trainer or writer to ensure the key points become lodged in the audience’s memory. When writing your speech you need to consider …
1) Who your audience are going to be. Try and repeat these points in a variety of ways. For example if you are going to deliver a talk on fair trade to a group of primary school children then this will be very different to a lecture you would give to academic staff.
2) What do you want to achieve?
Is the point of this talk to raise awareness or convince people to become agents of change? Pick three of four key points to make which will help you achieve this aim.
writing articles and designing marketing materials. Success. Fraternity” French Revolutionaries “Government of the people. In the case of speech writing it is no coincidence that many of the worlds most famous speeches contain the rule of three: “Liberty. Use words of significance. • Simple power words include:
Can. Easy. Countrymen" William Shakespeare
. (More information on power words and clichés can be found in the chapter. words that grasp the mind. Facts and stats are not sufficient in themselves to prove an argument or make a case. Today. You. Guarantee.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
How to structure your talk
Once you have your three or four points you’ll want to research some impressive facts and statistics. Romans. by the people. Equality. Urgent. Win.)
The rule of three
The rule of three is a marketing trick that can be perfectly utilised for delivering speeches. Change. words that are associated with positive action or call to action. Gettysburg Address. 1863 Friends. Simply put. Money. This manifests itself in various formats and will be found frequently in this book. New. Opportunity. for the people” Abraham Lincoln. The rule simply states that three is the magic number for memory retention. but can be used to build upon your points or to add context to your argument.
Use of power words
Just like when engaging people on a one-to-one level an effective use of key words will greatly increase the impact your speech will have on an audience. If you wouldn’t say it in an average day’s conversation then it isn’t appropriate here. Campaign Marketing. Positive. Quality. Power
Always avoid the cliché or loaded terms such as honour or valour. if you tell somebody something three times they are more likely to remember it.
sweat and tears" Winston Churchill "Education. Do you have PowerPoint slides? Would a short film get the point across and save your breath? • Is there an opportunity to give out any of your own leaflets or literature? Ensure that other members from your campaign team are present to handout leaflets or petitions and can speak to people as they arrive at the venue or before they leave.
Preparation (Before the day)
• • Know exactly where the venue is and ensure you can get there in time. Check that the venue will provide any equipment that you may need.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change "Blood. It can be a useful tool in gauging the crowds’ reaction to the talk. ensuring that you become familiar with it. Mixing up your style of presentation can be a sound means of achieving this. Whilst writing your speech out and practising it helps you prepare. Education. making them appear natural rather then forced. You want your speech to flow. Education" Tony Blair When planning your speech try and summarise your cause in three simple points and if possible in a simple.
Key points for preparation Write your speech out and read it though to yourself. You don’t want to be cut short before making your key points. and that your speech fits the time slot.
Involve the audience in the talk Whilst this is very dependent on your audience you may wish to take an interactive approach. This will ensure that you practise key words and phrases. but throwing questions out to the audience can be equally as effective. Make sure that you know how long you have to talk. make sure you don’t simple read from a script on the day. memorable sentence You might not make history but it will help keep your message in people’s minds. 46
. He who is late is punished by life.
and like it or not people will make assumptions about your character and your motivations depending on how you look. One clear example. It is important to remove any potential distractions. Jokes can be an effective way to get the audience to warm to you and enjoy your talk. drawing sighs and the inevitable tuts from the crowd who instantly wrote off a fantastic speech due to their own stereotypical views. nothing in the world is an awkward as the tumbleweed effect when a joke goes wrong!
On the Day
• Dress to impress
Superficial as it may seem the way that you dress is the first thing people will notice about you. • Use the toilet and Empty your pockets It is normal for people to be nervous before giving a speech but do your best not to show it. Also: • Arrive at least thirty minutes early This allows you to familiarise yourself with the venue and to check that any equipment you need is in good working order. If you are talking to a largely post-university adult or elderly audience then a shirt will ensure that you carry a degree of respectability. which sticks in my mind. you don’t want to be associated with that. Finally. Shirts and ties are simply what the public associate politicians to be like and they don’t often embrace deviations from this theme. • Don’t have more the one drink 47
. jokes. like a friend delivering a message. Often playing with the loose change or car keys is a symptom of this nervousness. This does not mean that you need to throw away the last vestiges of your individuality and don a corporate suit. it simply means you must be mindful of your audience. long before you open your mouth to speak. Students are used to lecturers and teachers droning on looking like this. A delegate strove confidently to the podium and delivered an inspirational speech on the value of education and of the campaign to defeat university fees. Simply put. Sadly the moment she stepped back from the podium she revealed a red t-shirt with “Bolshevik” clearly emblazoned on the front. Similarly if you are delivering a talk to students or young adults a shirt and tie will make you appear arrogant or patronising. You want to appear like a peer.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change and to appear natural. as body language is the single most important factor when engaging an audience. an audience will simply not find you reading to them an engaging experience. Make sure you’ve practised these jokes or at least tried them out on somebody first. is the National Union of Students conference at Blackpool in 2008.
You task is to win the crowd over and inspire them. The audience would rather you did this then start talking nonsense. speak slowly so people can fully understand what you are saying.
.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change Dutch courage is one thing but giving a speech under the influence will do little but make you appear unprofessional. Don’t ramble. not cement their scepticism with your slurred words! • Get someone to stand at the back This way you will know if everyone can hear you and if necessary they can be your plant in the audience to ask the right questions. You want to engage with your audience. feel free to walk across the stage. not hide from them. but don’t go overboard. Ensure that you repeat the important parts Use the whole stage. If you lose your thread then simply pause to collect your thoughts. this will simply make you appear unprofessional and can instantly lose you the respect of the audience. like an inspiring quote or a rally calling to action. say it and then tell them what you’ve just told them.
• • • • •
Ending your talk In short summarise your points and tie them all together. Finish on an upbeat note.
Presenting the talk At the start of the talk
• • • • Thank the audience Introduce yourself by telling them who you are and what your going to talk about Tell people that they will have an opportunity to ask questions at the end Sign post your talk by briefly bullet pointing the areas you are going to cover in your speech. In other words. Dramatic pauses in appropriate locations can help with this.
During the talk
• Do not rush your talk. you want people to listen to your message not nominate you for an Oscar. tell them what you’re going to say. Always aim to leave people inspire and motivated with the feeling that something can be done. making sure you don’t simply hide behind a podium. Be expressive Don’t swear.
just not in the way they wanted it. If however the speech hasn’t gone as well then the audience may challenge you on key points. Alternatively you can remind them that they are free to leave! If you are in a small group then a very effective way of dealing with a heckler is to give them exactly what they want. If a member of the audience looks like they want to get into an argument tell them that you’d be happy to continue your discussion after the talk.
. One technique. You must insure that you are in control of the situation.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
One of the challenges. This can be a great way of engaging and interacting with the audience as well as gaining vital feed back for your campaign. Walk and stand behind the chair where the heckler is sitting and continue with your talk as if nothing has happened. The important thing is not to get drawn into any arguments. pause and tell the audience that you will address the point at the end of the speech. is to turn the question back on the audience. a calm and considered response will be far more respected then a swift off the cuff remark. Depending on the situation there are a variety of ways you can deal with this. which many orators draw upon if they do not have an answer. do not allow the heckler to put themselves in the limelight. • • • If someone heckles you with an argument. Also don’t be afraid to pause and gather your thoughts before answering. which you may often be faced with when delivering a speech. More often then not they simply want attention. if your speech has gone well then the crowd should react positively and may ask you to elaborate points.
Taking questions at the end of a speech can be a daunting experience. This way the audience keeps its attention on your words and the heckler is put in an awkward position. is a heckler.
Whilst this university’s stance on the arms trade is commendable I’m sure that the university does not intend to make a stand
. It’s an advocate of fair trade and a recently published report shows that Portsmouth is the only university not to invest money in the arms trade.
Evidence of student interest and intent. This was due to alleged human rights abuses in areas such as Columbia and India.
Portsmouth University has a history of being an ethical university. People and Planet as well as other non-affiliated students to form an AntiCoke coalition to carry this campaign forward.
Following this Action day the Student Socialists joined with the Respect party. succinctly defining the injustice and the cause. The crimes that are being committed in Columbia are being carried out with weapons brought from the British government. woman and Children. I delivered the following short speech to the elected Union Council. Shows that this issue brings students together.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
An Example: The Boycott Coca-Cola Campaign: Portsmouth University 2006-2008
In 2006 I worked with a coalition of campaigners to lobby the Students’ Union to boycott all Coca-Cola products from the Union’s bars and catering outlets. These weapons are then sold on to the CocaCola paid paramilitary’s who use them to intimidate and murder the workers and their families. the largest student run policy making panel in the Students’ union calling for them to support the campaign.
Speech to Student Council of Portsmouth University Students’ Union April 2006 “On the 24th of January the Socialist Students presented this council with a resolution calling for an action day to raise awareness of the terrible crimes being perpetrated by the Coca-Cola Corporation in Columbia and India. crimes which have resulted in the deaths of thousands of innocent men.
Emotive opening lines.
We’d like to acknowledge the Union’s support so far in this campaign.
Clearly defined objectives
Statistics to back up student interest. These signatures prove that Portsmouth’s Students do care about this issue and are calling for action to be taken. We call for this boycott to be enforced not only in the Union building but throughout the University.”
. However the Anti-coke campaign does not end here.
Use of the Union’s/University’s ethical history to show common ground and historical precedence. be that directly with paramilitary death squads as we’ve seen in Columbia or be that though unethical and cruel business practises as we have seen in India. full support and to do everything in its power to act against atrocities perpetrated by the Coca-Cola cooperation and to enforce a full boycott forthwith. we call for Portsmouth Student Union to give its full commitment. we call for the replacement of Coca Cola products to be purchased from the “Hartridges soft drinks Company” which is based in Hampshire. This would be a move consistent with other Student venues across Portsmouth and would be supporting local industry.
To this effect we present over 1000 student signatures that have been collected by Coalition members throughout the Campaign. we plan to continue to raise awareness of the Coca-Cola’s crimes for as long as they continue to murder innocent people. We also call for the replacement of Coca-Cola not to be Pepsi Cola.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change against direct investment in the arms trade only to then invest indirectly by profiting the Coca-Cola Corporation. In response to the students’ concerns. To this end the coalition will be putting up a stand at the Society’s Carnival where we will continue to raise awareness within the student body. support that we are very grateful for. This boycott is an action against multinational corporations and removing profit from one multinational corporation only to pass it on to another is not a vast improvement Instead.
With this in mind we now call for a full boycott of all Coca-cola products as well as those sold by companies affiliated to. or owned by the Coca-cola cooperation.
both on a one to one basis and during a speech. This not only gave the campaign official support from the Union but meant that the Union would also lobby for the cause.
By this point you should have the basics of campaign communication.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change Following this speech the council voted unanimously to support the campaign. such as the section detailing how to successfully lobby officials or chair a debate.
. However. the ability to successfully engage with the public. in the next chapter we will analyse how to effectively use the media before looking at the role successful marketing can have on your campaign. As communication is such a vital area of any campaign it will reappear frequently in later chapters. it is important to realise that communication is not limited to the spoken word alone.
Often campaigning organisations believe that facts alone are enough to convince people to act which is simply not the case. However. and elevate them to the cause. you want to sell an idea. the Congregation for the Spreading of the Faith. indeed if your campaign is going to be effective it is going to have to be built entirely on fact and truth. being able to successfully promote your cause and your campaign means you will have to apply marketing techniques if you are going to succeed. Marketing theory As distasteful as it may first appear. this process does not have to include manipulation of information.” George Orwell
This chapter will enable you to understand: • The importance of marketing • Marketing theory – Principles of Marketing and Campaign Marketing • What’s in a word? Framing the Argument This chapter will then enable you to: • Put the theory into practise • Analyse successful marketing
Propaganda. the art or science of getting information across to people in such a way as they believe it and act on it. telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act. Whilst the need for fact needs to be a foundation stone of any campaign marketing there are techniques which will enable you to get your campaign message across. In the marketing industry this can mean persuading consumers to purchase a product or in political terms it can mean ensuring the electorate voting for a specific candidate. unless the facts are given context and framed by a compelling message or argument then people may simply not understand. you want to
. communicate with them. This is why it is essential for any campaign group to grasp the basic marketing skills needed to reach their target audience. If ever there is a word which conjures up dark images of spin and deceit then this is it. In the marketing industry the motive is profit and the method is to convince you to buy. this is obviously slightly different to coordinating campaign marketing. The term was originally coined by the Vatican in 1622 when Pope Gregory XV founded the “Congregatio de Propaganda Fide”. Essentially however the term propaganda simply means marketing. You do not want to persuade people to buy. you do not want to sell a product. distortion of fact or out right lying.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
Chapter Four: Campaign Marketing
“During times of universal deceit. Now the term is often used as political abuse or refers to distributing false information.
as with a media strategy you do not want to be investing time and money into marketing as an end to itself. Other avenues include: Pamphlets Web-Zines (On line magazine) Television Commercials News letters Newspaper Adverts Social networking sites Publicity stunts Leafleting Websites or a blog Radio Adverts T-shirts Word of mouth
Of course the methods you choose to utilise will be very dependent on your target audience and your budget. All too frequently campaign groups stick with A4 posters. marketing can cover a variety of mediums. Remember the first chapter. an idea or in this case a cause. someone is far more likely to trust information they hear from a neighbour or a close friend then something they read in a leaflet.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change persuade people to act. Whilst it may appear a cliché the most effective form of marketing is word of mouth. but may utilise a local radio phone in. Whatever form of marketing you embark on it is essential that you constantly consider your overall objectives. whilst posters are one avenue of marketing they are extremely passive and should only be used as one facet of a wider marketing campaign. However. if you talk to six people in the street who in turn talk to six who in turn pass on the message you can create an ever growing chain of people and reach more potential activists then a thousand posters ever could.
The principles of marketing
There are four central tenants of marketing. your mission statement and your campaign strategy. A small campaign group will not be able to afford a television advert. it is important to consider your target audience. these include: • • • • Campaign Recruitment To advertise Marches. Rallies. know as the “Four P’s”. Debates and other campaign events To raise awareness of specific campaign issues within the local community To frame your arguments
As with a media strategy. regardless of whether your selling a product. These are the crucial factors which you have to keep in mind. you should have a set. Websites and blogs are one of the fastest growing mediums of communication and provide activists with an unlimited space and a potentially unlimited audience. are you trying to appeal to internet users or do your targets use more traditional methods. There are various instances where you will want to evoke specific marketing.
. measurable goal you wish to achieve.
and support. However the price need not be monetary. publicity.” Blackshaw argues that marketing companies need to learn from campaigning organisations. It doesn’t matter what that product is. Why is the product desirable? Why would they want to buy the product. it can simply be what is exchanged for the product or services. which classically aim to connect to a large audience with a very sparse budget. which aspect of the community. why would they want to support the cause? In a commercial sense it would require specification and supporting elements of the product including purpose. branding and refers to the various methods of promoting the product.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
Product The most important aspect of a marketing campaign is the product itself. utility as well as warranties. This fourth P has also sometimes been called Place and refers to who the product or campaign is targeting at. The important factors to consider are how this product relates to the end user or the target audience. energy. brand. such as time. Pricing In a product sense pricing will refer to the financial process of setting a price for the product. or attention. Placement Refers to how the product gets to the customer. guarantees. In a campaign sense it refers to the goals and aims of the campaign and the support information equates to the campaign team itself. Blackshaw. sales promotion. as with this case. the CMO of Nielsen BuzzMetrics. it could be a campaign. or company.
The principles of campaign marketing
Marketing consultant Peter Blackshaw has built upon these four P’s with “Five P’s of Campaigning. defined five key adjectives that describe great activist marketing.4 These adjectives are:
Peter Blackshaw (2005) http://notetaker. it could be a cheese grater or. Promotion This includes advertising.com/cgm/
. which geographic regions. and personal selling.typepad.
4) Poor Unlike the multi-million pound marketing business a campaign organisation doesn’t work for profit and so is unlikely to have a bulging budget. this isn’t the case with activists. They were in no doubt that the University would eventually agree with them and their target would be reached. as unlike a marketing company which can afford to spend vast amounts of money and fail. activists however have little choice but to use their slim resources in a flexible. a media and marketing strategy become integral. agile. Marketers stand in strong contrast as their work is often full of disclaimers and fine print. Blackshaw argues that the two central driving forces in the recent blogging revolution are passion and authority as people click on. read and trust activist’s thoughts.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
1) Pure 2) Passionate 3) Prophetic 4) Poor 5) Paranoid
1) Pure The first adjective is pure.” 2) Passionate To put it in purely business terms. a campaigner’s passion is usually genuine. This can be viewed as a strength. passion sells. 3) Prophetic What Blackshaw truly admired about activists he witnessed during his University time was the fact that they really believed in their cause. As Blackshaw says. as Blackshaw states “there is an unmistakable purity to the activists' cause” a purity which drives trust. “We may not agree with them.” This is where a campaign strategy. As Blackshaw states “effective activists stick to their vision and help others to see it and believe in it. creative. It sells because unlike a marketing company sounding enthused by a product. credibility. we may even have reason to despise them. and believability which are of fundamental importance if the public are to believe in your cause and support you. and experimental way. But we always know where they stand. 5) Paranoid
Immigration is perhaps the best example of this. in the introduction and the first chapter I addressed the words “activist” and “campaign” as these are highly charged. Words which are loaded with connotations and meanings. which ultimately is where you will want to be in your marketing campaign. Peter Blackshaw put his marketing knowledge into action by creating his own activist blog entitled SaveThePool. and five steps ahead”. Loaded words work in exactly the same fashion. Professor Richard Dawkins and Professor George Lakoff. The relationship between words and the political cause is hardly a new development. it is unlikely that the word will conjure a neutral image because such groups and organisations have invested so much time and money associating the word with their cause and their propaganda. loaded terms which have been used to create a stereotypical mental image. When considering your marketing it is imperative that you understand how your message is perceived. for example this may be a memory of a cat you owned as a child. Often the word is associated with militancy. with little to no funding. and so it is these words which we constantly need to re-evaluate.com which is dedicated to saving his local community pool.
In Chapter Three: Campaign Communication. To prove the point I will refer to three very different analysts and writers. All words carry with them deeper meaning.
What’s in a word? Framing the argument. However. The word “cat” is a neutral word but saying it or thinking it instantly conjures an image in your mind of what you believe a cat to look like. It is our choice of words and our use of phrases which construct the methods we as activists use to present both ourselves and our arguments. words which if used effectively can inject a vast amount of imagery into a person’s mind within seconds. this can only be achieved by a very careful consideration of the words you use. The word instantly conjures up images of a stereotypical immigrant as defined by the media and political parties. yet for a political or marketing end.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change Often campaigners are forced to take an "us versus them" mentality as their actions are usually targeting against an organisation which has the ability to fight back with a counter campaign. as it can too social justice campaigners calling for Fair trade or local elderly residents protesting against the closure of a local fire station. as this book has demonstrated this is a very misleading frame as the words can just as easily apply to children and parents campaigning to save a local swimming pool. Indeed.
. political unorthodoxy and quite possibly violence. whose agendas are as dissimilar as their points are parallel. George Orwell. however they can be either neutral or loaded. can build a large web presence as well as a large presence throughout the local community through effective marketing. This website shows how a small campaign group. fiercely competitive. I mentioned the importance of Power words. Blackshaw equates this to the competition within the marketing industry suggesting that “paranoia keeps me on guard.
In the world of Orwell the Cold War was yet in its infancy and due to his premature death in 1950. however unlike Orwell his work constitutes an educated. Words. but rather “children with Christian parents” as children are not old enough to make a consciousness choice regarding faith. Clearly this is not a million miles away from the clinical phrase “collateral damage” that the Pentagon or the Ministry of Defence wheels out to defend modern day acts of military horror.” Dawkins. but was commenting on the relationship between words and meaning. the controversial scientist and writer of the “The God Delusion. Various writers have. The same process can happen to a political party. an ideology or in our case a campaign that becomes lost or bogged down in clichéd and tired rhetoric. thus creating a sense of “protective stupidity”. Orwell’s work constituted a similar assault. grounded as it is in the 1940’s. are often used by politicians to “defend the indefensible”. directly narrowed that person’s ability of thought. Orwell demonstrated how a party. can be an empirical or intellectual sheen over indefensible acts. contributed to Orwell’s concept of the relationship between words and political meanings. Such words. when villages are bombed and their homes destroyed this is called “pacification” whilst a forced exodus of people. In 1984. is dubbed “population transfer”. Orwell did not live to witness the world changing revolutions in both communications and political propaganda. Like Orwell. this is not the only way in which the choice of language is pivotal to politics. Orwell argued. which narrowed the amount of words in a person’s vocabulary. The point is that whilst their causes are different. albeit unwittingly. both writers recognise the huge significance of single words. articulate and rational assault against God and the perceptions of religion. Dawkins argues that we should not refer to “Christian children”. like Orwell is an atheist. Dawkins recognised that the words we use define our thoughts and therefore our attitudes and values. Dawkins takes this principle and identifies an area within his own cause. Orwell was writing in post-war England. in an era when totalitarianism had been defeated at a vast human cost in Germany and Italy.” It may sound small but this isn’t simply saying “fireperson” instead of “fireman” or “chairperson” instead of “chairman” but using “she” in many of the instances where we have been trained since school days to automatically say “he”. religious pronouns for describing children.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change In 1946 George Orwell wrote his most famous essay “Politics and the English Language”. a brutal denunciation of sloppy and slovenly writing but also a discussion on the relationship between words and politics. yet continued to thrive in Franco’s Spain and Stalin’s Soviet Union. such as the Cossacks under Stalin.
. Orwell argued both in this essay and in his later masterpiece 1984 that words as a political tool can contain the potential of both enlightenment and of tyranny. Orwell was not simply writing about slovenly word play as would a sixth form English teacher. However. Orwell remarked. Dawkins argues that this would raise consciousness surrounding religious debate as much as feminist pronouns did for feminism since the 1970’s. As Dawkins states. “language is the single most important consciousness raiser. yet his target was human totalitarianism. This is not to say that his work is of little value. Among these is Richard Dawkins.” To make this point Dawkins refers to the Feminist movement and specifically the radical movement of the 1970’s that fought for “feminist pronouns.
of American action heroes with Ray-bans and of old fashioned flag fluttering patriotism. against an unempirical notion. socialism. “free market”. who writes for an American audience argues that the Republican party have already learnt the significance of words. He states. and international consciousness one need only think of the phrase “War on Terror”. Lakoff talks of “framing words”. of down flights in Pennsylvania.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
George Lakoff. The word Fascism has now no meaning except in so far as it signifies “something not desirable”. of fireman pulling lifeless bodies from smouldering wreckage. or “framed”. others include “immigration”. they are neural links to metaphors and narratives. “free trade” and “environment” to name but a few. a professor of linguistics and cognitive science. or free enterprise. When the left speak of being free we may be discussing freedom from tyranny or from exploitation.” Lakoff. The words democracy. of turbaned fanatics wielding Kalashnikovs. “Freedom” and the principle of what is “free” is perhaps the most engaging example of this. As Orwell states. the phrase has become framed so as to unleash a plethora of values and images. it advocates a war against the intangible. “progressive political groups must struggle to define their principles and values. Of course when a conservative speaks of freedom they may be referring to the free market. and building an infrastructure to communicate them. justices have each of them several different meanings which cannot be reconciled with each other. with Lakoff’s premise kept firmly in mind we can find clear and present lessons for Socialists. The “War on terror” is just one of many national and international phrases which have been politically framed. analysed objectively it means very little. For a physical simile of how the framing of words works. at Berkeley University in the United States understands the significance of words and the lessons progressives and campaigners must learn. The phrase now conjures horrific images of planes crashing into towers. realistic. Put simply you couldn’t take a photo of the war on terror and put even more simply. thus giving the principle a vastly different meaning. Lakoff argues that words are not merely expressions. patriotic. The phrase is a cold slab of rhetoric. which has been the dogged mantra of the American Bush administration since 2001.
. Political words are therefore loaded. It is clear that the “War on Terror” is not a politically neutral term. freedom. however through endless repetition of imagery and its insertion into generic speeches. how different political organisations can use the same word. simply type “War on Terror” into an image search of Google and the result will be an electronic version of our sub consciousness. from a political perspective. “many political words are abused. With this comes a necessary willing to support “our boys” and the belief that any deviation from complete loyalty to the cause is both heretical and unpatriotic. carefully choosing the language with which to present them. “terrorism”.” Here Orwell is also referring to framing. yet frame it in such a way as to ensure its meaning completely changed. The premise is a simple one. “conservatives have spent decades defining their ideas. Just as Orwell identified that words and their meaning have a political relationship.” It is these definitions which Lakoff believes to be all important. you couldn’t put it on a plate. To understand the affect of politically framed words in the national. To return to Orwell’s essay. Like Orwell and Dawkins.
from the very moment that you name your organisation.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change So. blog an article or for that matter giving a speech. who after all is your target audience. using key words which are associated to the values and goals of your campaign. If your about to use a phrase which you wouldn’t use in everyday conversation then don’t use it!
Putting this into practise. When writing a leaflet. a villain. With this message you are using the word free. This isn’t a decision to take lightly. Whilst freedom is an often disputed term. Naming an organisation Campaign marketing should not be considered an isolated area of your campaign. extending towards us from the 1940’s. Instead it is important to construct new frames. how to structure your marketing message and how to analyse successful marketing. In another example. For example. which means you are campaigning against yourself. Many campaigning organisations or political groups will use words. which is associated with freedom. It is important that you consider the words you are going to use and the effect they will have on your audience. “bourgeoisie” and “petit-bourgeoisie”. but what does this mean for campaigners today? It means that when considering the message you want to promote you must bear in mind the words and also the frames you are dealing with. These are very simple examples but they show how framing works and the logical words. usually a hero figure has to save something. both from contemporary analysts and from the hand of Orwell. The following sections will explain how to name an organisation. if you are against the “War on Terror” then do not use the phrase as it merely re-enforces the existing frame. The second lesson these writers bring to us is the need for clear. For example. remember that the campaign name is the first thing people will see and is therefore the first thing they will judge you on. Fire-fighters are also usually depicted as heroic figures so a simple three word sentence suddenly implies that the heroes themselves need saving and that whoever is trying to shut down the station is the villain. which is inherently negative. then a simple “Keep our Forest Free” would be an ideal frame. Left wing groups have been notorious for doing this with words such as “proletariat”. values and imagery which are associates with key words. By using the term you are alluding to the idea that this freedom is under threat. The word “save” implies that someone. coherent language. write each line as if you are writing to a friend.
. it is a value understood by all. phrases and quotes which will mean very little to someone outside of the organisation. antiquated words which will mean very little to the average person. if you are campaigning against the proposed building of a new motorway through a forest.
There is of course a difference between knowing the theory and putting it into practise. if you are campaigning to save a local fire station from closure then a “Save our fire-fighters” will create a very effective frame. but needs to be built into every aspect of your strategy planning. the victim from somebody else. we have the theory.
This phrase was so successful it has since been emulated by a campaign group in the United States who are calling to scrap the tick box on job application forms which enquire about any criminal convictions a candidate may have. The phrase instantly conjures images of destroyed Japanese cities and Cold War fears. Now of course you then have to run a serious campaign and have the money to do that and have the public relations support. but the first step is understanding how to frame it.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change An example of how to name an organisation is provided by Professor Lakoff who put his theory of framing into practise. as CND have repeatedly done. it also ensures that whoever says it is immediately advocating the cause. a study into how many toxic chemicals the average American consumes and keeps in their body. It is important to consider the context you are working in. statistical information without a frame. when he consulted an organisation named “Centre for Disease Control. You call your campaign Be Poison-Free. has a frame of death and destruction.it kills you. to phrase the campaign name and marketing message as being “No to Nuclear War. It makes you look at who is doing the poisoning. which makes the phrase catchy. media and marketing friendly name. “Don’t think of an Elephant”
. if you are campaigning against the renewal of British nuclear weapons a simple “No to Trident Nuclear Weapons” may sound right. I said. and they will associate the word defence as a positive. Some effective examples of this include “Ban the Box”. the people you are trying to write and that you frame the title correctly. Why use the word "poison"? Because the framing of poison has a poisoner.” 5 When considering how to name your group it is crucial to consider what your vision. Other examples of well named organisations include: • • •
People and Planet Stop the War Plane Crazy
George Lakoff. in the belief that the facts would be strong enough to shock the public into supporting change. values and goals are and how they can be summarised into a simple. Lakoff argues that this was a compete failure because the group was “not taking communication seriously and not taking conceptualization seriously. Everyone knows what poison is . "It's very simple. a campaign against speed camera on British roads which was active in the early 1990’s. Everybody knows that. which is harder.” The centre was researching “body burden”. especially of the nuclear variety. In order to avoid such a frame it might be wiser. but are you merely reinforcing an existing framed argument? There has been much debate using the phrase “Trident weapons system” and some may now associate it with defence. The clever phrase not only includes alliteration.” There is no doubt that war. Initially the group merely released their findings as factual. as defence saves people from attack. For example.” Lakoff goes on to tell how he turned the fortunes of this group around through successful framing and a simple marketing exercise: “They asked me how they should run a campaign on it.
and it must be recognised that if you are campaigning about an issue which is not clearly present in someone’s everyday life. such as Columbian trade union rights. Instead choose the three most important aspects of your campaign and condense them into one engaging message. However. often attempt to be overly artistic or clever.
. Bombarding the audience with a barrage of facts and statistics will own confuse and alienate potential supporters. Here a classic campaigning trap presents itself. the sentence or passage which contains your core values and aims. For example. You want your campaign name to summarise it in a single phrase. First off. especially student groups. presenting goals and objectives on their own will fail to engage unless they are accompanied by context and explanations. but before you choose your words you have to choose your message. often they have simply not had the opportunity to gain the necessary knowledge. If you can clearly demonstrate the positive values that your campaign stands for you will attract initial attention. It is also integral to remember who your audience are and where they are on the issue. not simply what your policies are. it is integral for people to understand what your values are. Keeping your message simple It is advisable to channel a complex issue into a smaller. Policies and methods are then something that can be discussed and debated later. it would be reasonable to assume that students are already fairly well informed about paying University fees so a campaign message could start at an in-depth level. It is a popular idiom to suggest that only students and the retired have the time to lead campaigns. media friendly image. All too often campaigning organisations “policy silo”. By message I mean a consistent line which stays true throughout your campaign and across your marketing initiatives. The key is to keep your message consistent. It is not ignorance. frequent repetition is essential for creating frames. they will not have had the time or inclination to research it. As with facts and statistics. in many cases it is best to assume that the general public know little to nothing of your cause. you want people to engage with your message. Phrases such as “War on Terror” have only developed their politically charged meaning through constant repetition in the mass media and in political speeches. so keep it simple. Developing your message Understanding the importance of key words is a fundamental tool for the marketing task. Many campaigners. Policies can be divisive and even people who share the same ideology can succumb to sectarianism. this means they simply present a tick box list of aims and objectives but fail to frame them with values and persuasive arguments. values on the other hand are uniting and inclusive. or melting Ice caps. direct and straightforward. Remember you aren’t aiming to win a marketing award.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change Whilst there is no simple formula for developing a name it is advisable that you consult your mission statement. Often activists can adopt a patronising stance to the general public and assume that it is merely ignorance which prevents the public from knowing and supporting the cause.
If you can you can use your message to portray your cause as the victim and frame your opponent as the oppressor then you will be framing you campaign message in a known narrative. a victim and an oppressor. Two ways to achieve this is to find the unacceptable and to look for examples of conflict. real activities which produce tangible and real results? Put simply.
Developing a slogan
The task of developing a marketing slogan. you have to consider where the line of acceptability lies with your audience. which will be used throughout your campaign marketing. which in turn can generate interest. This can often be seen in television adverts when the product is centrally placed within a story. Find the unacceptable and look for conflict When creating a message it is useful to create a “hook”. which will in turn result in death and destruction. One of the most engaging narratives is one of conflict where there are two protagonists. could you take a photo of your message? If not. framed slogans to accompany their propaganda. Finally. Constant evaluation is of paramount importance. Three of the most famous examples from British general elections include:
. Often the argument is framed to suggest that failure to act. Slogans are not only used in your printed material. it isn’t real. but should also be found on placards and chanted during marches. rising sea levels and apocalyptic weather patterns. which sound all well and good but are they really tangible. Since the 1970’s political parties have turned to marketing companies to create effective. A favoured marketing technique by large companies is to deploy narratives to frame their product. What is your final objective. an aspect of the story that will grasp people’s attention. The best contemporary example of this can be found in campaigns against climate change. consider what you are asking people to do.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change Don’t write these people off. is akin to forming your mission statement and a logical extension to establishing your campaign name. give them the opportunity to learn and empower them to support you. By finding a conflict scenario you can inject a sense of injustice. leaflets and T-shirts. such as on posters. whilst your campaign may not be able to present such a clear case example. Finding the unacceptable is putting forward the idea that failure to act will produce an unacceptable situation and that this campaign presents a tipping point. Indeed in the case of “Ban the Box” the campaign name is the campaign slogan. and a failure to save the environment will result in catastrophe such as melting icecaps. you need to objectively access how effective your message is and if it is achieving the desired results. Clearly this presents an unacceptable result from inaction. One key evaluation technique is to consider if your message is real? Often groups will say they are “raising awareness” or “reaching out to the public”. what is your end goal? Is your message aimed at recruitment or advertising for an event? Ensure you constantly consider you goals.
For example the “Treat AIDs now” the cause and the goal are both highlighted. Do they engage and agree with the slogan. is it something
. engaging with the public and ultimately doing the work that will make your campaign a success. a straightforward way of creating an effective slogan is to try and work out how some of your stakeholders perceive your slogan and what they will understand it to mean. • Your activists are going to be the people on the ground.
The four key factors which have to be considered are: • Your goals and how the slogan explains and elaborates upon those.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
“New Labour. New Danger” 1997 Conservative Party poster “Labour isn’t working” 1978 Conservative Party poster “Britain deserves better” 1997 Labour Party Poster Outside of main stream politics effective campaigning slogans have included: “Killer Cola” Coca-Cola Boycott Campaign “Treat AIDS Now” People & Planet Aids Awareness Campaign
As the following diagram shows.
consultation is fundamental to this process. it’s the real thing” thus using a corporation’s framed. understanding and empathising with your audience is crucial. Next work out which words or values are associated to these words. famous slogans against it. Of course this can just as easily be turned against you in a counter campaign. which was formed in 2003 after alleged human rights abuses. The Killer Cola campaign. For example the “Labour isn’t working” slogan was hugely effective in areas which suffered from high unemployment. it also include the public who need to engage with and be persuaded by your slogan. Once again. but also if they can form a counter frame to discredit it. The diagram will begin to look like this:
.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change they will be happy to shout and something they can take pride in? Again. It’s the real thing”. • The community equates not only to the location and environment in which your campaign inhabits. The important aspect to consider is not only how your opponent engages with your slogan. it wasn’t so successful in affluent areas. The one person or organisation who you should never leave out in any consideration is your opponent. Place the name or goal of your campaign in the middle of a spider diagram and then choose four to six key words which are associated with this. These are the people you are targeting and the people who you hope to influence to effect change.
A simple word and values association exercise will help you to form your slogan. Unveil your slogan at a general meeting and take the feedback seriously. took the famous slogan “Coca-cola. and manipulated it to “Murder.
which holistically is what the campaign was striving to defend. which logically suggests that the target of the campaign is striving to make it unfair. the phrase “fairness” is predominantly agreed with. the aim of the marketing is to utilise these frames to convince you to buy their product.
Analysing Successful Marketing
We may dislike them. Whilst the term equality can be a politically disputed term. which is generally agreed to be a negative term.
.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change This example is from a Student Union campaign against growing University fees. whilst also using a key framed word “fairness”.” This slogan features the key word “education”. In the example below English footballer Wayne Rooney is depicted in an advertising poster for Nike. indeed we may be campaigning against them but often the multinational corporations can provide examples of marketing which contain framed ideas and values. The final slogan used was “For a Fairer Education. This slogan therefore implies that the campaign is fighting to keep education fair. The success of this slogan could be seen instantly as students from a variety of political back grounds were all happy to march under its banner and use the phrase when engaging the public. This simple image goes beyond the superficial and poses a variety of frames each intended to trigger brand recognition and brand loyalty.
Slogan shows extend.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
Whilst commercial companies may be the most prolific producer of marketing. this shows it is an inclusive campaign
. This first example comes from the Control Arms campaign which calls for a government regulated control of all fire arms. large campaign organisations can also provide some working examples. The campaign is international in its objectives and its “million face” marketing attempts to show the global support for the campaign. timeframe and goal of the campaign
Simplistic black and white colour scheme
Anti-Gun symbol comprised of people’s faces demonstrates collective strength
Use of numbers show how well supported and united the activists are.
The poster comes from Democrat candidate Senator Barak Obama and uses frames to portray Obama as a patriotic candidate standing for change. thought provoking.
. The poster does not use a slogan. instead it focuses entirely on values. After all you may have the most engaging. regardless of political ideology accepts as positive. action and change are value laden phrases which everyone.
Getting your message to the people Whilst developing your message is both an art and a science the true challenge comes with delivering that message to your target audience. rebel rousing marketing ever produced. and gives no specific details about the candidate’s policies.
The Obama poster is especially worthy of note because it demonstrates the importance of word framing. White and Blue design displays patriotism Campaign logo also resembles American flag Link to more information subtly placed. Rule of three in action for slogans Use of power words to portray Obama as a dynamic candidate offering positive change Red. but it isn’t going to do any good if it ends up sitting in your house gathering dust or being used as a book end.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
The second example comes from the Presidential election in the United States of America. The words hope.
much like a campaign strategy.
Developing a media strategy
A media strategy. which may in turn make your group regional or national campaign leaders. It is an industry or great variety and complexity staffed by journalists working to tight deadlines with a large side helping of stress. Of course the majority of people don’t use this to search out injustices and troubles in the world. both between activists and to the general public. Today we live in an age of glistening mass media where news and views from around the world are available at the click of a mouse or a remote control. omnipotent force. It is therefore crucial that you take time to consider how you are going to attract the right sort of media attention and how you are going to make your campaign something a journalist wants to cover. is vital to the success of your campaign. Therefore it is vital that you take your campaign and place it firmly on their agenda. Of course the mass media is not one large. is a plan of action for getting your campaign firmly on the map. If you are able to get national converge. and hopefully more supporters. Coordinating this side of the campaign can certainly be time consuming so it is advisable that you delegate
. Your campaign is also instantly given a degree of legitimacy if it is covered by a widely known and respected news source such as a local newspaper. The key way to achieve this is to draw up a media strategy. If you’re lobbying an official such as a local MP or a University Vice Chancellor then unwanted media attention is an effective way of stepping up the pressure. if you want to make sure that your campaign is not confined to meeting rooms and dingy pubs but is thrust onto a larger stage then you’re going to have to learn how to use the media to your advantage. in a newspaper or on the Internet then your campaign can also act as example to inspire others. regional and national media to your advantage • Understand the value of News • Construct a press release
We have established that communication. militant mob to being seen as serious campaigners with a real message.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
Chapter 5: Utilising the media
This chapter will enable you to: • Develop a media strategy • Understand how to use the local. By successfully utilising the media you can achieve a wide variety of aims. they’re more likely to seek the apathetic embrace of virtual shopping or to check their e-mails. This will help you cross the line from being seen as a motley. However. There are of course the tangible benefits of gaining more support.
1) Goals: Forget coverage. radio. or trade newspapers? 3) Media Sources: Next you must consider the variety of media outlets you can utilise. It is important that you consider your goals when developing a media strategy.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change this part of the campaign to a team of activists who will focus purely on this area. parts of the media which are often over looked: • Local Radio stations have a large. think results. o Radio phone-ins are ideal for you to get your point across and get it debated
. loyal and trusting listener base. For example students may not purchase the local newspaper whilst most people in the wider community will. but to help you achieve the short and long term goals of the campaign. The aim of the strategy is to provide a detailed plan considering who you are going to contact. • • • • What is your overall goal? Do you aim to Influence people to act? To attract new supporters? Publicise an upcoming event?
2) Audience: Once you have set your aim it’s importantly to choose your target. Similarly does your target audience use the Internet. Who do you want to reach? Different people will interact with different media sources. these include:
Local Local Newspaper Student Publications Local commercial radio Volunteer Radio Stations Regional Regional Press Regional Radio Local Newspapers from surrounding towns National National Tabloids National Radio Stations Independent Media Activist Networks Larger Campaign Organisations
Consider the under exploited mediums. how they can serve your goals as well as ensuring that your campaign is both newsworthy and of interest to the people tuning in. You should not be seeking media attention for the sake of it. clicking on or reading through that media source.
education or environmental correspondent. if you can bring new facts to a subject that’s a rarity and thus is worth something to a journalist. However. The single most important point is to understand the difference between news and opinion.
4) Own Media: Aside from the wider media it is important to consider information sources members of the Campaign can run themselves. The letters section gives anyone the opportunity to put print to their views. 71
. A campaign may not instantly grasp the attention of a newspaper editor but may interest specific journalists such as a political. exploit that opportunity. or hold an event on Monday and your more likely to get good coverage.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change • • Trade Press: Does your campaign affect specific people which might have a publication aimed at them. a local political party branch or a parent campaigning organisation?
5) Targeting journalists: Once you have set your goals and set your sights on an audience it is important to work out whom you wish to contact from your chosen media source. Everyone has an opinion. A newspaper’s website is a useful source of information. such as your local students’ Union. • It is important that you tailor your enquires to your campaign goals. • It is also advisable to be familiar with any publication you are approaching. and generally everyone likes to shout about it. Examples might include a magazine for teachers and lecturers If your campaign is based around education. • Are you affiliated to a wider body. Has the publication run similar article recently? If so who wrote them? It is advisable to build up a database of journalists who you’ve worked with and who are prepared to run with your stories. Contact your journalist on a Sunday. • Do you have you own website updated? Utilising forums can be a great tool for consulting members. Letters sections are a widely over looked but popular section of both local and national newspapers. which give news value.
How news works
In order to understand how you can make your campaign an attractive news prospect for a journalist you must first understand how news works and the factors. Monday morning papers: Journalists often struggle to fill the middle pages as Sundays tend to be slow news days.
Often this takes the form of a moral panic that builds into a media storm before disappearing from our radar. has a variant of your story been covered before? Can you build upon it?
. politics. For example a local events magazine will run very different features to that of a political journal. crime and fashion. The more topics you can cover the more readers will be interested and therefore the more a journalist will want to run it. There are several key factors that can add extra value to your story.
The value will also go up if you can develop an existing story. and should be highly considered when drawing up your media strategy. For example if your campaign is centred on the closing of a hospital. grasp the public’s attention and dominate the media. temporarily at least. It is crucial that you bare this in mind when approaching a media source. Have similar campaigns been run recently? Is your campaign a response to a government decision? Is this part of a national trend? These are the facts a journalist wants to know. • Subject
What category does the story fall under? The most popular subjects tend to be sports. If your story can tap into this.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
News is fresh. the environment. then its chances of being published go through the roof. if it can become fashionable news. but that’s not all. Newspapers are a business and they need to sell to readers. unpublished and generally interesting to the readership. A journalist will not look at your campaign article in isolation but will want to know the background. a newspaper will therefore tailor its articles to a readers taste. attempt to understand the audience you are writing for. • Readers
Readership is perhaps the most important news factor of all. • News Fashion
There are many subjects which. • Context
The context of any story is hugely significant. If you can add any of the following to your story then you’re mining journalistic gold. celebrity. not just locally but nationally. Look carefully at previous additions of the publication.
This factor depends on how many people are already aware of the topic you are covering. or the longer you wait after an event before you send a press release the less the story is worth. If your story relates to a new development only known to you and the journalist you are contacting. The longer your story goes unpublished. A press release can be used for a variety of purposes such as: • • • • • • News Official statements Feature promoting Up Coming Events Background information Funded Advertisement
Constructing a press release The art of constructing a press release comes by summarising everything about your story into a few simple lines.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change • Source
The value of any story will rely on the accuracy and reliability of the source. If however it is information that has been the public domain for a while then it is danger of becoming “old news”. Ideally the journalist should be given a complete picture of the basics in the opening lines. or the results of your campaign to a journalist. then its value vastly grows. This is done be sticking to a simple 5 W’s formula. Your aim should be to give a journalist enough information to publicise your event or considering covering it in person. Media is a twenty-four hour fast-paced industry that isn’t interested in stories from months ago. In your opening lines you should address:
. or campaigners from well known organisations.
Timing There are several things in this life that grow more valuable with age such as a fine wine or expensive cheese. Does the journalist know that he can trust your story? Where have your facts and statistics come from? You can legitimatise your story by adding opinions and quotes from experts such as lecturers. News however is not one of these things.
A press release is the main form of communication you will use to announce an upcoming event. local politicians.
and any additional information.
So as an example your press release may start: “Students (Who) at Manchester University (Where) succeeded in getting their University to withdraw all investment from arms companies (What) this week (When) following a campaign led by the People and Planet Society and supported by the local MP.
. Many writers make the mistake of believing that the more points they make the better. Remember who your audience is: Readership is the most important news factor or all so it is incredibly important that you tailor your story to fit the readership. Make it clear to the journalist why the audience will want to read about your campaign. (How)”
Structure: The Pyramid An inverted pyramid is the key tool to constructing your press release.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change • • • • • Who did it? When did it happen? What happened? Where did it happen? How should also be added to ensure you’ve covered all basis. Pick three crucial points and build the release around them. whilst this might be true of a features article or an essay piece it isn’t true of a press release. this is followed by context. • • • • Essential information at the start Context Quotes Additional information
Writing your press release: Before you start typing your press release you must consider: • • What is the story? Why would the media want to cover this? What is your angle. does it have a human interest angle? Your message: Choose three key points that will get your message across effectively. Your story must be top heavy with all the vital information conveyed at the start. is it local. If you have two many points then the key sections of your release are in danger of becoming lost in a sea of words. quotes.
Importantly it only has to be someone perceived as being an authority such as a local. a rally or a stunt make sure you send your release out early. why should an editor want to publish your story? In order to answer this try and think like a journalist. • E-mail or faxing your release
Using the contact details that you would have found during your background research make sure that the release gets to the journalist who is likely to be the most interested. What can you add to your story that will increase its value? • • Think benefits to the reader. If you are attempting to publicise an upcoming event such as march. statistical evidence to your story then this adds reliability to your story. ideally giving the journalist a weeks notice. Personalise the e-mail heading or the subject. • Case histories Adding historical precedence can also greatly legitimise and add emphasis to your cause.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change • How can you make your message as concise and clear as possible?
Exercise: Adding Value to your Story It is integral to ask. how successful have they been? • Surveys If you are able to add empirical. Look for previous campaigns.
Sending your press release out. your job is to inform and to entertain the readers. Think of how may junk e-mails land in your inbox each day. Expert Opinions & External experts If you can get support or at least a quote from someone perceived to be knowledgeable or an authority on a subject this will greatly legitimise your argument. not just the features of your piece. This becomes especially important as you build up a relationship with key journalists. respected politician. it’s no different for a journalist so make sure it’s going to interest them. 75
. If they have had good stories from you in the past they are more then likely to use you again.
ideally in ten words or less. • Poor use of English Make sure that you’ve fully proof read your release to make sure there are no simple errors that will make you look unprofessional. you don’t want your message to be besmirched by a renegade comma! • Be consistent with tense. it’s almost a guarantee that their readers won’t be either. It is also worth calling the day before just to remind them. There is no reason why you should expect the journalist to be familiar with your campaign buzzwords or abbreviations.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
It is wise to follow up any sent release with a phone call. “Local residents (Who) Challenge (Verb) MP to debate (What) injustice of local hospital closure (Why). This is an opportunity for you to give them more information so as to keep their interest. It’s often easier to write the headline after you’ve written the main article. • • • • Keep headlines short: Ten words of less Simple: What is your main point Short Words Include a verb for dramatic effect. Common Errors There are a few traps that you must avoid so not to taint your entire release.
Here is an example of an effective headline which covers all the key points. just to ensure that the journalist has read it. take some photos yourself and send those in with a new follow up press release. they are not interchangeable
The Campaign is (Present) The Campaign will (Future) The Campaign was (Past) • Avoid any jargon or “campaign speak”. journalists are people too! If the press are unable to cover the story but have expressed interest. Remember the Campaign Communication chapter. Also check for grammar and punctuation.
Headlines Much like your opening line you want your headline to neatly encapsulate the story as briefly as possible. the same rules apply.” 76
Celtic are atrocious". Here you can include any facts and statisitcs. next to any logo which your campaign may have. alternatively if this is a follow up press release then state “photos avalible.
• • •
. it merely has to neatly summarise the key point of your story. February 2000 But of course your headline doesn’t have to be a work of art nor does it have to have a stereotypical tabloid pun. You may wish to include a “notes” sections. If you would like a photographer place the phrase “photographers welcome”.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
There are of course the more bizarre. Clearly state when this story is to be relased.
Format of a Press release • • • • In order to be effective a press release needs a clear format that an journalist can quickly navigate to find the information they need. Ensure that the phrase “Press release” is clearly printed at the top of the page. both for context of your story but also so the journalist has something to work with. Placing a time embargo on a piece can serve to make it more valuable. and eccentric headlines such as.” Place your contact details at the bottom of the page Mark the release with the phrase “ENDS” so the journalist knows there is no more information. The Sun. "Super Caley go ballistic.
How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
Model Press release
Press Release For Immediate release (or insert date) -HeadlineInclude the What, Where, When, and the avalabillity of photos First Paragraph Second Paragraph Third Paragraph Quote Quote Photo Contact Details END Notes
How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
Press Release Example: Save Copnor Fire Station 2007-2008.
The following press release was written and distributed by the Hampshire branch of the Fire fighters Union as they launched the campaign to save a local fire station from being shut down. This release is an excellent example of a campaign press release as it contains the following factors: Recognisable branding
Hampshire Fire Brigades Union
PRESS RELEASE PRESS RELEASE PRESS RELEASE Embargo – For immediate release 26 October 2007
Embargo on the date, giving this release value Development of an existing story Demonstrating a historical precedent
Public feeling running high opposing the closure of Copnor Fire Station
Public lobbying groups have joined forces with the FBU opposing the proposed closure of Copnor Fire station. Residents in the Copnor Fire Ground are angry at the proposal by Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service to close their fire station. Local residents, neighbourhood watch schemes and local politicians have all come out in support of the campaign to stop the closure of Copnor Fire Station. These groups are incensed that Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service are resurrecting plans that are in effect 6 years old. Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service tried closing this valuable and much needed station 6 years ago; the public were against it then, that opinion has not changed. At the various meetings held with the FBU the message is quite clear the residents of Portsmouth do not want their station to close. They have no faith in the message coming out of Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service that it is not a done deal. The way it is being proposed is that this is the only option and the consultation process is just to inform the public when it will happen. The public are not convinced by the spin Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service give to their response figures. Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service claim that they can respond to anywhere in Portsmouth within eight minutes 80% of the time wherever their engines are. This maybe correct, but presently Copnor have a response time of less then 4 minutes to most of the properties in the area. An 8 minute response is double what they currently receive. “For years fire services have been telling the public ever second counts in a fire. The message appears to be now “its okay we can get there in 8 minutes.” When the Fire Authority met to vote for the consultation on the closure of Copnor Fire Station, it was clear that it was the Conservatives who are in favour of closing the fire station. The public we are meeting are making it quite clear that if this closure goes ahead they will not be voting for the Conservative party in future local and national elections. There is a public meeting Monday 29th October 2007, 7-9 pm at Copnor Parish Church of St Alban, Copnor, Portsmouth. The various support groups will be attending in large numbers and are concerned the venue booked is not big enough to contain all who want to be heard. Contact Details: xxxxxxxxxx Photographers Welcome to attend END
Use of facts and statistics to bolster argument Fantastic quote to pullout. Covers political context Suggests that the meeting will be very busy thus alluding to a great public interest. A brilliant hook for a journalist, indeed this became the opening line of the eventual newspaper report.
How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
The campaign to save Copnor fire station, which at the time of writing has moved into its second year, is a fantastic example of a campaign that has seized the imagination and embedded itself into the local collective consciousness. This was partly achieved by the professional campaign ability of the Union uniting with local support groups such as the neighbourhood watch as well as an effective media strategy. In fact this campaign became such a publicly debated issue, and generated so much interest that the organisers were approached by two of the three main political parties and asked to stand in local elections.
Getting the attention of the media is one thing, but once you have a journalist at your event you need to know how to deal with them. The most common form of interaction your campaigners will have with a journalist is an interview. In the case of a television journalist advanced preparation is vital. If you have a media coordinator within the campaign team then they may be the best person to field any questions or give any interviews, partly because they will have been the person who made the initial contact with the media. Whilst a newspaper journalist may want to talk to you about your event or your campaign in depth, a journalist from a radio or television station will be looking to fill a news slot which will be thirty seconds long at the very most. Therefore they will be looking for catchy quotes and sound bites that they can use to swiftly summarise your event. Often campaigners who have had little media experience will find this tricky, so here are a few factors which you should bare in mind before agreeing to be interviewed • Request a list of questions so you know what you will be asked in advance.
If you have been contacted prior to your event and know a journalist or a TV crew will be attending ask for a list of questions in advance. This ensures that your team are well briefed and are likely to give better answers. • • During the interview always give short answers, this ensures that your words are less likely to be taken out of context. Just like when talking to the public, giving a speech or writing your press release try and keep to three main points and keep reverting back to these. This will ensure that you get your message across in a simple, straightforward manner and will make it harder for a journalist to take the conversation off on a tangent.
placing you one step closer to your goal. accessed the factors which give news value and have broken down the features of an effective press release. In this chapter we have analysed conducting a media strategy. thereby legitimizing you in the eyes of the readership as an authority on the issue.
Finally. Do not allow yourself to be led off topic.
. You must always consider how you are coming across to the average person. Stay loyal to these people and they will continue to work with you. Over time you may start to forge good relationships with specific journalists who regularly cover your events. This is especially true if you are concerned that a journalist may distort your words or give you negative publicity. To ensure that you don’t fall into this trap it is important that you constantly evaluate and if necessary rework your media strategy and the way you approach journalists. giving them something to actually report about is quite another. If however the answer is yes. getting the attention of a journalist is one thing. often the media will play up to this. if the interview does not fulfil objective you are free to refuse it. how to coordinate your team to host events. then you will quickly raise the profile of your campaign and its importance to the community. However. These tools will enable you to effectively understand the media. stick to your three key points. The next chapter addresses the final theory stage. attract their attention to your campaign and use them to put your campaign on the map. Eventually they may start coming to you for your own views on other stories which relate to the campaign.
Evaluating your campaign The cliché may state that all publicity is good publicity. Unless you have seen the questions in advance it is difficult to know which angle a journalist will take when covering your event. Many members of the public have a stereotypical view of what an activist is and what a campaign means. stunts and activities which will put all the theory into practice. these are relationships which you need to foster. remember that all contact with the media should fit with your media strategy and you long term goals. but sadly this isn’t the case when it comes to campaigning. Are the goals that you seek meaningful to them? Is your relevant to their lives? And perhaps most importantly are you presenting yourself in a way which is engaging to them? If the answer is no then you seriously need to reconsider your strategy. the very people who you need to win over to build up support for your campaign.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change • Don’t be distracted or allow the journalist to take you down tangents.
it is action which will persuade people to support your cause and it is action will make people stand up and take notice of you. concrete. events give your activists something to aim and build for and also provides opportunities for people to engage with your campaign. how to develop a strategy. There are a wide variety of events you could organise. how to coordinate campaign events. the success of which will be entirely dependent on your
. However. how to establish a group. a campaign is about taking action. in order to be a success your events need to be well planned and well coordinated with specific aims. positive actions that will help you achieve your campaign goal and the question of how to coordinate this action shall be dealt with in this chapter. Demonstration or Rally • Manage campaign stunts • Lobby Officials • Effective Petitioning • Understand the law
This is the chapter that this book has been building up to.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
Chapter Six: Campaign Events
This chapter will enable you to: • Coordinate a successful event o An Action Day o Hosting a debate o Organising a March. how to set your team winnable goals.
Coordinating a successful event
Hosting events are integral to any campaign. how to communicate with the public. However. the media and how to create effective marketing. Ultimately it is real. Until now this book has dealt with strategy and planning.
stalls and stands placed in key areas such as a high street. such as a campaign for a national or international issue then you must consider where the largest number of people are likely to be congregated. or interested in your cause. ideally a petition.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
Film/Documentary Showing Talks/Lectures Music Night Motion to your local council or Student’s union Quiz night
Conference/Debate Fundraising Action day stall
Demonstrations Poster Campaign Petition/E-petition
Postcard campaign E-Postcard campaign
Holding an action day
An action day is a stalwart of any campaign as it can be an effective tool for recruitment or awareness raising regardless of how many activists you have available. However if you campaign is some what broader. outside a building your are lobbying. and when. For example Saturday afternoons in a local shopping centre. • Give people something to do Approaching people coldly can be a daunting task for anyone. such as a school or a fire station then consider the people who live in the catchments area who will be affected. or a series of. For example if you are campaigning around the closure specific building. A petition
. It is important to consider the people who are directly or indirectly involved in your campaign. so make it easier for your activists by giving them a prop. Put simply an action day normally consists of one. The important aspects to consider are: • Who are your target audience? There is little point setting out a stall in an area which doesn’t attract people who are affected by. inside a students’ union or at a key location where you can find your target audience.
together they achieved the largest demonstration of public opposition ever mounted in British History. Ensure that you have the following carefully organised: o Campaign Leaflets and other literature or information people can take with them o Petition or similar method of recording people’s contact details o Engaging items such as campaign badges or postcards o If you have access to a lap top have a constantly revolving presentation.
Organising a march. You should also announce some upcoming events at this meeting so new activists feel that they are already building towards something concrete and constructive. but is carefully integrated into a wider campaign plan. It also provides you with a straightforward way to get people’s contact details. You don’t want people to simply sign the petition and walk away. Ensure that you have organised a follow up meeting. the rally and the demonstration and iconic campaigning methods which can leave a lasting impact and act as a powerful agent for change. It is the quintessential way of presentation strength of public feeling and support.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change gives the activists a spring board to launch the conversation but also all gives people something concrete to do. Some of the most iconic campaigns have had marches and rallies at their heart. either on the day or the following day. After all your opponent may be able to ignore one or two people writing letters. for passer by it is the first thing they will notice about your campaign and it may well be the first impression they get. they may even feel they can ignore a petition but it is impossible to ignore a large mass of determined activists gathered together. • Setting out your stall
Setting out a campaign stall is something which needs to be carefully considered. This meeting should serve to introduce your campaign and your strategy. Of course the 2003 march
. both of you and your cause.
• Follow up action It is crucial that any day of action your organise is not an isolated event. you want to engage them and to motivate them into action. Visual aids can demonstrate a campaign far more powerfully then telling someone about it. There will be more information about petitioning later in this chapter. In 2003 an estimated two million people took to the streets to march against the impending invasion of Iraq. demonstration or rally
Consider your target It is crucial to consider who. or what you are marching against. Are you outside of a company headquarters. 1. Of course you do not need to have millions of people in order to make an impact. you simply need to ensure your event is well planned and your activists are well prepared. first it is imperative that your activists can actually attend.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change is not the only iconic march. posters and propaganda • Are you providing transportation to the event? • Will you be creating placards and banners? • Will you need to pay travel costs of speakers? Ensure that your campaign treasurer draws up an itemised budget. otherwise your efforts are wasted. The following points constitute a check list of factors you must consider if your event is going to have any point to it. By this I do not only mean the person but also the venue. Perhaps a crucial vote is taking place or the date falls on a relevant anniversary. 4. 2. There is not reason why a march or a rally has to be costly but there may be a variety of costs you should consider: • Leaflets. 3. So holding it on a week day during work hours is unlikely to be a raging success! Secondly with a little research some dates can have a great significance. or indeed any chance of affecting real change. Are there any main roads? Is it private property? Are there any bottle necks or obstacles which will slow down or disrupt the march? Ensure that maps are issued prior to the event and are also available on the day. Consider the route If you intend to move a large body of people ensure that you have studied the route you intend for them to take. Funding Finance is a perennially tricky issue for all campaign activities and simply can not be ignored. a couple of hundred will do just as well. throughout the 1960’s and 70’s such marches’ were frequently taking place against the War in Vietnam. and then ensure that you stick to it!
. Consider the date The date is a crucial factor for two reasons. a disputed leisure centre or a local council office? Ensure that the people who can actually affect change are there.
There are various methods to keep your activists engage which include guest speakers. ensure that the route is clear and that everybody is well behaved. group chanting and singing or coordinating a stunt. 7. Remember to re-read chapter four for campaign marketing advice. The Police The law will be dealt with in a later section but it is important that you local force are made aware of any large scale public gathering. It is crucial that your stewards are easily identifiable to both your activists and the police. but also keep the activists informed. This usually ensures your safety. Speakers and keeping the Crowd active Having hundreds or thousands of people marching or standing around has a huge visual impact but it is important to keep the crowd active and engaged otherwise they may simply go home. It is vital to ensure that if you have speakers then they have a mega-phone and that the rally takes place in a space large enough for people to congregate but sheltered enough so people can hear the speaker.
. It is also crucial that they are well briefed and informed prior to the event so that of there are any problems they can be swiftly dealt with. Ensure that you send out numerous press releases before. it doesn’t matter how important the cause is. 6. It is also advisable to coordinate an activity which your event can be centred around. makes the event easier to manage on the day and circumvents any potential legal problems at a later date. The Media The media are the people who will ensure that your event leaves a long lasting impact and a bitter taste in the mouths of your opponents. Always request a photographer but if one is not forthcoming take photos yourself and send them with the press release.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change 5. 9. on and after the date to guarantee coverage. 8. They not only guide the march. and unless people are told about the event they won’t turn up! It is wise to plan you event weeks or even months in advance and to start your marketing campaign as soon as possible. Stewards Having volunteers to steward the event is crucial on the day. for example the presentation of a petition to an official. Advertising Advertising is the single most important aspect of all.
flag had the name of the campaign marketed clearly. posters.
. each protester was given a CND placard which ensured brand presence.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change 10. leaflets and other visual aids. Making your point Finally. banners. • • Decorative banners gave the protest a distinct visual presence Each banner. This can be achieved through stunts but also through placards. Also. it is important that all parties can instantly recognise the point to your event. The following photos were taken at a march/rally organised by Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament against the proposed Trident missile system.
These photos provide a useful visual reference to the aforementioned points.
How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change • Protesters engaged in a variety of activities such as cycling around the site or singing in a choir. Secondly the campaign sought to petition the University to investigate its investments to ensure student’s fees were not indirectly funding the occupation. One of the most effective campaign methods to deploy is a stunt. The purpose of the campaign was two fold. As the Israel-Palestinian conflict is so complex the campaigners decided to approach and later work along side students from both Israel and Palestine as their testimonies. you simply need to think out side of the box. This ensured that they stayed both active and engaged. The climax of the campaign came with a stunt that succeeded in attracting attention.
Example stunt: Campaign to twin Portsmouth University with AlQuds University. 2006-2007
Throughout the 2006/2007 academic year a group of students formed a campaign which sought to twin Portsmouth University with a University in the Palestinian West Bank. firstly to bring attention to the long standing conflict with a call towards the importance of education to preventing war. and varying interpretations would make the issue real and give it a human face. A clear police presence was instrumental in guiding traffic and ensuring the safety of the protesters. a stunt is particularly useful for attracting the attention of the media. which symbolised the partition wall which cuts across the West Bank and cuts straight through AlQuds University in East Jerusalem. A stunt is defined as an unusual action which draws attention to the campaign. and long lasting impact.
As your campaign may start small it may be unrealistic to expect you to muster hundreds or thousands of people to a march or a rally. raise curiosity around the issue and also secured hundreds of signatures on an ever growing petition. The campaigners decided to build a mock wall across the entrance of the Students’ Union. The following photos show how the stunt was coordinated:
. This is not to say that you still can’t make a large.
How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
armed with petitions. which ensured a large potential audience. The campaign ended with one thousand signatures being handed to the Students’ Union officers calling for an investigation into the investments of the University.
This stunt was coordinated by around five people. to attract attention and engage the students in discussion. was designed to large and decorated to ensure maximum affect. the wall. badges and other materials. Indeed images of the stunt were not only printed in the student and local media but have featured on campaign websites across the internet.
. It took place on a Friday. and War on Want who provided them with an assortment of leaflets. This demonstrates that you do not need hundreds of activists to make your point or to make a lasting impression. These materials gave the campaign a degree of authority whilst also provided the activists with something to give to students so they did not simply forget about the campaign. The most visually engaging prop. one of the busiest University days. The use of both an Israeli and Palestinian flag demonstrated that the campaign did not aim to take sides in the dispute but intended to draw attention to the disaster facing both peoples. A team of activists. The campaign team has been in contact with larger organisations such as Campaign against the Arms Trade CAAT. a relatively small central campaign team.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
This stunt was effective for a variety of reasons: • It was placed at a busy thoroughfare of the University meaning that many students would come into contact with it throughout the course of their day. They also provided an instantly recognisable symbol which both attracted attention and curiosity. dressed as soldiers were positioned at various mock checkpoints.
The following photos demonstrate the visual impact of the stunt:
Three of the “chain of debt” portraits showing campaigners and contributors to this book
. This wall stood in the main entrance of the Students’ Union building but was also used a back drop for a debate held between the Union and the University’s Vice Chancellor. a black board and some chalk. The photos were then correlated and were used to build a large collage of portraits. and local government to stand against the impending increase in University tuition fees. a chain. and long running. which were turned into a wall of debt stricken faces. yet did not call on them to invest a large amount of their time or energy. a campaign which sought to make students aware of the increasing fees and to lobby the University. Activists spent weeks attending student meetings and holding actions days armed with a camera. Students were invited to write their expected level of student debt on the black board. The campaign was multi-faceted but the most engaging.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
Example Stunt: The Wall of Debt: February 2008
In early 2008 I worked with a group of students to coordinate the Student Union’s official campaign for a fair education system. The strength of which lay in the ability to include a vast amount of students. event was the Wall of debt stunt. whilst wearing the chain around their neck.
How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
The Wall of debt
The Wall of debt
the only thing politicians love more then a captive audience to preach to is other politicians to argue against. However. You may find yourself debating against a local council figure but you could just as easily find politicians to debate alongside or with you. it also provides you with a platform from which to shamelessly plug your campaign. As Morys Ireland states in his article on utilising local political figures. The photos also
Hosting a debate
Joining a debate can be an extremely useful way to test your convictions and the strength of your cause. such as a local MP is an established brand within their own right which brings instant authority as well as a sheen of legitimacy to your arguments. A recognisable figure.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
The Wall of debt
The strength of this student lay not only in the strong visual impact of the photographs but it was also moveable so could be transported to form a back drop to speeches. and even national political figures to your event. rallies and debates. preferably one which can provide a stage. A well organised debate is one which takes place in a large and accessible venue. This opens up a whole new ream of opportunities for advancing your cause. So attempt to invite local. often such events are hard to come by so you may be forced to host the event yourself. a large amount of seating.
Similarly the chair may pose questions to either team and may also take questions from the audience. the first and second speaker for each side may give a reply speech. rather then simply a series of tirades. it is worth sticking to the following rules. After all speakers have spoken. After all speeches and reply speeches have taken place the debate may open freely. Speaking time for initial speeches is 8 minutes Teams shall take it in turn to forward their case in short speeches. Team Debate • The format for team debates is three speakers to a side with only two teams in each debate.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change microphones and a sound system. The chair acts as judge and referee throughout the event and must remain impartial and fair at all times. The chair is charged with ensuring that opinions are respected and that no two people are speaking at once. The only people who may speak at the debate are the three speakers for each team as announced by the chair. directed through the chair.
• • •
. Meaning that members of the debating teams can not ask their opponents direct questions but must ask them to the chair. Before the debate begins each team must inform the chair of the names of the three speakers and the order in which they shall speak. At the very least you will need three designated tables for the opposing debating teams and the chair person.
Debating Rules In order to ensure that your debate remains fair and balanced. The main duties of the chair include: • • • Ensuring that no speaker is interrupted Ensuring that no speaker goes over their time All questions and statements are addressed to and thought the chair. The most important role to consider when organising a debate is the role of the Chair person.
How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
Questions • • • Once the speeches and reply speeches have taken place the chair may open the debate up for questions from the audience. so as to control the debate. All questions must be addressed to the chair who will offer both teams the opportunity to reply. It is the task of the chair to make sure that only one person is speaking at a time. For example if you are campaigning to save a local leisure centre then your targets will be the leaders of your local council. must not take sides and must ensure that every opinion is respected. neither can afford to lose their customers or their voters. The panel of judges must be objective and can not take sides in the debate. The time allowed for questions and answers is dictated by the chair
Judges and Chair • • • The outcome of the debate can either be decided by a panel of invited speakers. The chair of the debate must also remain objective. especially if your campaign coincides with an upcoming election. Lobbying is the art of persuasion. In this instance it may be possible to win over a local politician and convince them to make your cause an election issue on their manifesto. along with the chair. or by votes from the audience. It doesn’t matter if your target is a politician or a business. This may entail convincing a politician how to vote or calling for a company to carry out a specific action.
So far in this book we have discussed the importance of analysing your opponent. What is lobbying? Lobbying is about attempting to influence people who have power so that they will support your ideas and your plans. this way you have gained a crucial ally. It is always desirable to win over your lobbying target but if this isn’t possible the demonstration of public support may be enough to shake them into action. either through a convincing argument or by demonstrating the strength of public opinion to your cause. If there is one thing that local politicians fear then it is falling out of favour with the public.
. but how do you convince that person to agree with your cause and adopt the change you seek? The most effective method is through constant lobbying.
When selecting a target you must consider: 1. For example if you are campaigning to have fair trade products introduced to a company or an institution then this is unlikely to be a decision that a CEO would take. Who has the power to help you achieve you campaign goals and will they be willing to do so? 2. this is a formal connection. Informal connections are those people who you know who are in a position to affect change but you know them in another setting. especially not the day to day operational decisions.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
Preparation Crucially lobbying will only be effective if it is well prepared and well presented. this is a lucky example of informal access. It is crucial that your target is linked to the agenda. Who do you have access to? This second point is quite crucial. Linked into this are the formal and informal targets that you may choose to lobby. For example it is of little worth to lobby a MP on a matter outside of their 96
. Step One: Who are you lobbying? It is important to consider exactly who it is you are lobbying and what power they have to influence events. For example students are unlikely to have any contact with the Vice Chancellor who manages the institution. Member of European Parliament to members of the local council. It also refers to the action you wish your target to take. It is also important to remember that not all decisions are made at the top of organisations. For example you may only get to talk to a local politician if you meet them at an event or book an appointment to meet them at their constituency office. By agenda the diagram refers to your campaign cause or your motivation for lobbying. Alternatively you could target the Vice Chancellor of a University or if you are facing a corporate opponent the target may be a local manager or a CEO. that they can actually have an impact on your cause. instead research who the catering manager is and lobby them.
Targeting Triangle The diagram below demonstrates the relationship between the three important aspects of effective lobbying. However during a campaign mapping session at my own University one of the group realised that the Vice Chancellor was a member of the student choir at that he would have access to him once a week at choir practise. On the political front your targets could range from your local Member of Parliament. There are a few simple steps you must take to ensure you are lobbying the correct target and that your goals can be realised. you may wish to consider who you have both informal and formal contact with.
If there is a link between your formal and informal targets then this can also generate an opportunity for a more subtle lobbying. http://www. For example if you are in contact with someone who knows or works with your target then they can informally talk to them and hopefully influence them.
Step two: What can your target do? Once you have selected your target to lobby you must be clear as to what you want them to do about an issue.com/
. Do you want them to raise the issue in parliament? Contact a specific ministry or department? Simply attend a meeting and raise the issue? You are more likely to receive a positive reaction if you can define clearly what action you wish your target to take.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change constituency.theyworkforyou. One way to achieve this is to use the website “They work for you”. This may also work the other way if you can recruit a politician to lobby your target on your behalf. These methods simply give you added leverage over your target making your campaign harder to ignore.
Step Three: What is their stance on the issue? Regarding politicians it is useful to know where they already stand on your issue. as this will have a great influence on if they are prepared to act on your behalf.
The first step is to write a letter to your target. An example can be found at the end of this section. Writing an effective lobbying letter There is not set formula and no concrete format for setting out and phrasing your lobbying letter.
. but do not feel that you have to follow a formula. and always keep the tone polite. Here are a few suggestions. Many campaign organisations produce generic letters which you merely have to sign. straightforward. The letter should be formally written. Secretary of State and Minister. polite wording is always acceptable. Your letter will be more likely to stand out if you write it on your own style. • You must then ask:
What are they realistically going to do? Is your campaign politically sensitive? If so a politician may be reluctant to publicly campaign for fear of alienating voters. How to lobby There are various tried and tested methods to lobby effectively once you have selected your target. it is quite likely that if a politician or CEO receives hundreds of generic looking letters then they will take far less notice of yours. This historical information can be a vital tool for research before you make contact with a politician. and in your own every day language. the best lobbying letters are clearly personalised and will have a far greater affect and feel of authenticity. If this is ignored.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
This website keeps the contact details and voting records of every Member of Parliament. however. Do not feel you have to use formal or elaborate phrases. should be polite and friendly whilst clearly outlining your cause and exactly what you would like the person to do. Are there any barriers in place to stop them from helping you? For example if a political party has a specific stance on an issue then your politician may not be able to break that party line without being sent into the political wilderness. Use language that is natural to you. which means you send it to a local newspaper or website to be published and made publicly available. Finally you must consider if there are any other groups which can place pressure on your politician. or you receive a negative reply that you believe is intentionally unhelpful then perhaps you should consider making your letter an open letter. For example if you are campaigning around University tuition fees or against Government investment in renewed Nuclear weapons and your politician has voted against these issues in Parliament then they are far more likely to aid your campaign then if they voted for them.
) Middle: Specifying your aims The central part of your letter should make a specific request to the person you are writing to. that you present a rational argument and clearly suggest that the person you targeting has the power to affect change.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change Formatting your letter • The best lobbying letters are short. according to Amnesty International reports.
Starting your letter Usually the best way to start a letter is to identify both your self and your reason for writing. Avoid writing in an aggressive or offensive style. For Example: I am writing to you as a member of (insert group name. an organisation which works to (insert cause) and I am writing to you to discuss (insert topic. It is wise to write a couple of lines about yourself so the reader can understand who you are. remember it is your job to win this person over to your cause and this will not be achieved by alienating them. If you are write to an address abroad. these can be divisive whilst you are looking for unity. I am asking you to make sure that (name) is charged with an internationally recognisable criminal offence and promptly brought to court or released.”
. make your points in as simple a manner as possible. factual and polite and come complete with straight to the point facts. which is a popular activity of Amnesty International. For example if you are writing a letter as a member of Amnesty International it may have the following aim: “Please use your influence and authority to ensure the prompt release of (name) because. Ensure that you are positive and encouraging throughout the letter. are you a constituent? Did you vote for them in the last election? You can mention that you are a member of a wider campaign group or you can write as a concerned individual. then it is best to write your letter in English unless you can get hold of an accurate translation. Instead focus on values and over arching aims. If possible it is wise to avoid mentioning ideology or politics allegiances. There is little point in fluffing up the letter with needless rhetoric. she is a newspaper journalist and has not committed any offence. Ensure that you ask for a reply.
I would be grateful if you could confirm that your government does indeed oppose such practices. When meeting someone face to face you have the opportunity to clearly outline your goals and specify what you want your target to do. Ensure to reread the skills outlined in Chapter three: Campaign Communication to brush up on how to introduce someone to your campaign. Yours respectfully or Yours sincerely are the best endings Example: Lobbying Letter The Following sample letter is produced by Amnesty International: Address Address Address Subject: As with a press release. however remember if you are targeting a CEO of a business or a private individual then it is their prerogative to say no. attach a brief headline clearly announcing the subject matter. and tell me when he will be charged? I look forward to hearing from you on this important matter Yours faithfully Signature (Insert your name)
Face-to-face meeting The next stage. Please use your influence to ensure that he receives medical treatment and that he is charged with an internationally recognisable criminal offence and promptly brought to court or released. and has been held without charge for several months. I understand he is in poor health. which is perhaps the most effective for ensuring a clear understanding between your target and your cause. Dear (Insert title and name) I am writing about the case of (name) who was arrested on (date) and (place).
. Examples: I look forward to hearing from you on this important matter. If you are contacting a politician then they may well be obliged to meet you as a constituent.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change Ending your letter Try to include a phrase in your conclusion that encourages a reply. Please could you let me know what medical treatment (name) has received and when. Make sure your name is clearly legible: printing in capitals helps. is to arrange a face-toface meeting.
Petitioning is the most effective way to demonstrate mass support for you campaign. this not only serves to include and empower the people who turn up but also means they can take them home and spread the word to their family and friends.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
Spreading the word It is quite possible that your target will agree to help your cause once you have written to or met them. As petitioning is such a valuable tool the next section shall be entirely dedicated to it. Today the potential of petitioning has reached new heights with the advances in global
. the practise originated in ancient imperial China but has been used to advance the cause of momentous campaigns. most notably throughout the 18th and 19th century. Ensure that you have a liberal amount of petitions or lobbying letters which you can hand out to people. Historically petitioning has played a vital part in campaigning. it is much harder to ignore a letter with a thousand attached signatures. • Photo opportunities & Direct actions
Organising a photo opportunity or a publicity stunt may is a good way to attract immediate attention as well as giving your media a hook with which to attract journalists. The fight to abolish Atlantic slavery was largely achieved by parliamentary petitions coordinated across the country by William Wilberforce’s abolitionists. This can be achieved in a variety of ways including: • Open meetings
Adverting and hosting a open meeting to discuss the issue and the lobbying can be a useful tool to building up a lobbying movement.
A petition looks like a simple collection of signatures but is in fact a vital campaign tool which has the potential to fulfil a variety of your goals as it is not only a method of lobbying but is also an engaging way of approaching and empowering your target audience. however in the case that they resist your next step is to go public and involve as many people as possible. Similarly the right to petition has been enshrined in both British and American law as a recognised form of protest and request. You may even choose to invite the target of your lobbying to the meeting to publicly discuss the issue. If you send a letter to a politician with only your signature on it then it may be ignored.
8 million people against road pricing. national and international authorities with millions of signatures. Whilst holding marches. In February 2007 the British Prime Minister’s office received an on-line petition signed by 1.
. which validated the signatures as students and e-mail address. By presenting a petition to your target you are clearly demonstrating a tangible and measurable public support for your cause. The petition includes the following key information: • • • Clear logo and campaign name which clearly identifies the campaign A list of goals and values which ensures that people know exactly what they are signing and supporting Field of information which not only validates the signatures but also allows you to contact them with follow up information to involve them in the wider cause.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change communication. Example: UPSU Campaign to Defeat Fees The following example is a petition created by Portsmouth Students’ Union to campaign against increased University tuition fees and for a fairer education system. Everyday petitions are submitted on-line to local. demonstrations and other direct actions may form core parts of your campaign it is far easier to convince one thousand people to sign your petition then it is to convince those same thousand people to brandish a placard on a rainy Sunday afternoon. This includes student number and course. such as the internet. Universities and Skills. One thousand signatures were then presented to the Secretary of State for Innovation.
Listen 2. When collecting signatures and engaging the public it is important to remember the lessons of Chapter Three: Campaign Communication. and throughout the campaign. Remember the process through which you must guide someone:
1.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
The petition is not only a tool for lobbying but is also a key prop for approaching and engaging people during an action day. Empathise 4. Explore 3. This gives you a clear reason for talk to someone and presents them with something they can actually do to support the cause. By using a petition as a prop it is easier to approach members of the public with a clear purpose. Elevate
The activists had a well coordinated media strategy which ensured that the story was published in local newspapers. Universities and Skills. Secretary of State for Innovation. which formed part of a students’ union campaign for a fair education system. The day was a success for a variety of reasons: • The Campaign team in Portsmouth had regular meetings with similar campaign groups in surrounding towns and cities. The story was also featured on local radio stations and on the national television news The activists were able to secure support from a large organisation.
The activists from Portsmouth University meeting Mr Denham
. This campaign reached its pinnacle with the lobbying of John Denham. namely the local Students’ Union but also from the national Campaign Against Fees The lobby was timed to coincide with pending local elections.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
Example: The Lobbying Of John Denham February 2008
The “wall of debt” stunt. thus making fees and University debt a campaign issue for local politicians. Activists collected over a thousand signatures over a two month period with an aim of presenting the petition to Mr Denham. whose constituency office was located in a local town. thus making the campaign regional as well as local.
. More information can be found at his website: www. Alternatively the “Activist legal project”. its purpose is merely to explain what the law is and the relationship your campaign will have with the law. have written a comprehensive guide of legal advice for activists.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
Local press coverage of the lobby
Understanding the Law
It should almost go without saying that you should endeavour to keep all of your campaign activities legal and peaceful.activistslegalproject. which can be found at: www.org.org.uhc-collective.uk The information contained in these guides is not an incitement to break the law. The following legal advice comes from Peter Gray. a campaigner for the environment and also a lawyer who is frequently asked to advise anti-road protesters. That said it is useful to be aware of the law regarding activism and campaign activities such as the laws of assembly.uk/webpages/toolbox. a not-for-profit collective. trespassing and disturbing the peace.
Therefore. and if you're not careful it can look a bit silly. stating the date. protest or march on public land. they can be challenged in court by judicial review. trespassing. Twenty people marching down the street does not look at all spectacular. Usually. in writing. time and proposed route of the procession and the name and address of the person proposing to organise it. it may not be a good idea to hold a demonstration unless you are confident about attracting a large number of people. The law regarding organising a protest or march links into the second important aspect of the law. the owner of land is the person to whom the land is registered at the Land Registry. it belongs to whoever can prove title to the land. in the case of a march trespassing is defined as “an assembly of trespassing persons on private or semi-private land. without their permission. as opposed to an assembly in a public place. means to enter another person's land unlawfully. "Serious disruption to the life of the community" may include traffic congestion or blocking shopping streets. you should hold it within the terms of sections 11 to 14 of the Public Order Act 1986 (POA). duration and number of participants. serious damage to property. in the usual sense of the word. but they cannot do this on their own initiative: they must first obtain an order from the local council. serious disruption to the life of the community. For legal purposes a "public assembly" means an assembly of 20 or more persons in a public place which is wholly or partly open to the air. or the police suspect that an assembly will take place in connection with the procession. In extreme cases the police may ban a procession. such as restricting the place. Trespassing To trespass. in other words.” In that case that you have decide to hold a demonstration. or intimidation. UK law takes the view that all land belongs to somebody.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change Demonstrations. It is important to remember that you do not need permission from the police to hold a demonstration. and if nobody can
. the police may impose conditions if they reasonably believe that the procession may result in serious public disorder. It is crucial to consider where you are holding your event. They can also impose conditions on a procession or assembly on the spot. There is no requirement to give advance notice of an assembly or meeting. they may impose conditions on the assembly. However. If you deliberately fail to comply with any directions given by the police you are almost certainly committing an offence.” Therefore it is advisable to organise your demonstration. but if you do give advance notice. The conditions imposed by the police must be reasonable: if they are not. If the land is not registered. As Gray states “twenty people sitting on a digger looks spectacular and is a great photo-opportunity for the media. The main points of which are that the organisers must give 6 clear days notice to the police. Marches and Assemblies Peter Gray argues that it is important to think very carefully about whether or not it would be a good idea to hold a demonstration.
are reproduced at Appendix 7. the freedom to assemble and the freedom to protest are rights enshrined in British law and so you will face no penalty for using them.com This law exists to protect the reputation of an individual from unfair attack and may be dealt with either as a civil or criminal matter. This law works in a very similar format to that of a physical attack. but you use it for another purpose: for example. if you go on to land without permission. Unauthorised camping. Libel and Defamation of Character The law does not only have to be kept in mind when coordinating physical events but must also be considering when drafting your marketing message. Before the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 (CJA) came into force. However. squatting and obstructing work on site are all forms of trespass. which had to be dealt with in the civil courts. to remove trespassers. the individual may claim damages
. that an owner or occupier of land could remove trespassers from his land using reasonable force without the help of the police or a court order. However. landowners (including the DoT) will nearly always involve the police. The following definitions have been taken from this book. because it is easier and safer for the landowner. Another key source of information on libel can be found on the BBC website. it belongs to the Crown. The most relevant sections of the CJA. If a landowner If you are in any doubt regarding your rights or the law surrounding your campaign it is highly advisable to seek legal advice from a solicitor. www. since the CJA came into force on 3rd November 1994. if you have a right to cross a piece of land. many more of them have become criminal offences. Making false accusations against a person or an organisation in print can break libel law or be considering a defamation of character. you are trespassing. or go to court for an order. If you plan your events and your campaign carefully and sensibly then the chances of you falling foul of the law are very low indeed. Therefore. It has always been the case. After all if you are planning a march of a demonstration then a police escort can come in very handy for clearing traffic and for drawing attention to your actions. That is still the case today. You may also be trespassing if you have permission to go on land for one purpose. Land may also be occupied by tenants or leaseholders who hold a tenancy or lease from the owner.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change prove title to the land. namely sections 61 to 69. delivering speeches or writing articles. tree-dwelling. which is published by Oxford University Press each year. For a fuller definition of this an ideal work to consult is “Mcnae’s Essential law for Journalists”. merely ensure that everything you say is true and can be proved.bbctraining. The freedom of speech. However it is advisable to announce your intention to protest or march to the relevant authority just for piece of mind. these were mainly civil matters between the trespasser and the landowner. even before the CJA. that does not necessarily mean you have right to camp on it. Here the law is not difficult.
in relation to any request for information.uk
Freedom of Information act: Part 1 . The Freedom of Information act is a great example of this and has been used to great affect by campaign organisations such as Campaign Against the Arms Trade (CAAT).states: (1) Any person making a request for information to a public authority is entitled : (a) To be informed in writing by the public authority whether it holds information of the description specified in the request. is to any extent relying on a claim that any provision of Part 2 relating to the duty to confirm or deny is relevant to the request. The Freedom of Information Act can be found on: www. The important difference is that in a case of physical assault the judge will decide the penalty based on legal standards.Commercial Interests . Remember. or would be likely to. but can be proven with real. However.gov. whilst it may appear a subjective law it is in fact in place to strike a balance between freedom of speech and the rights of an individual. Therefore ensure that everything you claim is not only true. This law constitutes the largest threat to a writer or publisher and so must be kept in mind when considering your campaign message. and (c) states (if it would not otherwise be apparent) why the exemption applies.foi.Exempt Information Section 43 .states: (1) Information is exempt information if it constitutes a trade secret (2) Information is exempt information if its disclosure under this act would.
. that whilst libel and defamation laws seem alarming they will be avoided as long as you keep strictly to the truth and the provable.Refusal of request . which is the writer. tangible evidence. Part 2 .How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change and reparations for any damage inflicted upon their character. to have that information communicated to him.states: (1) A public authority which. or on a claim that information is exempt information must. The Freedom of Information act Of course the law is not always there to restrict your campaign efforts at times it can come to your aid and present fantastic opportunities. to prove their accusations and assertions in court. give the applicant a notice which (a) states that fact (b) specifies the exemption in question. It is the duty of the defendant. prejudice the commercial interests of any person (including the public authority holding it). within the time for complying with section 1 (1).General right of access to information held by public authorities .Access to Information held by Public Authorities Section 1 . and (b) If that is the case. Section 17 . in a label or defamation case the jury decide upon the penalty.
it is important to remember that a public body cannot just decide that a piece of information is commercially sensitive. and it provides campaigners with a key tool for retrieving information. NHS trusts and local authorities. prejudice the commercial interests of any person including the public authority holding it'. The act presents the campaigner with a legal avenue to information which may prove vital in a campaign.” This covers 'information which would. Using the Freedom of Information Act If you have contacted a public body to request information regarding investments and that body does not respond or is deliberately misleading and unhelpful then it is possible to use the act to formally request the information. It is important to remember that under the Act public bodies: • Cannot refuse to provide the information requested unless it is exempt • Must indicate whether they possess the information requested. accountability and transparency regarding public funds is visibly in the public interest and so this should stand as your main defence against any exemptions a public body attempts to make. The act clearly outlines that information. merely that you must be aware that they exist. colleges.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
The Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FoIA) came into existence on the 1st January 2005. In order to make a FoIA request you merely need to type a standard letter or email and should mention the act clearly and specifically regarding the information you are seeking. Unfortunately there are some categories of information which are exempt from disclosure. This section is not intended to incite you to break any laws but merely aims to arm you with your rights. However. all exemptions to the act will have to be justified and supported with evidence.
. • Must assist or advise where it is 'reasonable ' to do so. During their Clean Investment Campaign. or believes that the scope is too wide. It has often been used by campaigning organisations to inquire about the investments of public bodies. In the case that the public body finds your request unclear. If you are in any doubt after consulting the mentioned websites or texts it is advisable to contact a solicitor. Campaign against the arms trade were often met with “Section 43. they will need to let you know and should advise you on making a new request. The act does not only apply to central and local government but also covers universities. This is not to say that you are likely to break them. • Must respond within 20 working days (this may be extended if a body is considering the 'public interest' but this extension must be 'reasonable'). or would be likely to. This section of the book aimed to provide you with a very condensed version of the laws you are most likely to deal with whilst coordinating your campaign.
hiring a speaker. Political organisations can also be a source of administrative and logistical support. Trade Unions and other similar groups will often send speakers for free. community organisations . Charities.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
Gaining the support of political organisations By Morys Ireland
Sometimes organising campaigns or events can feel pretty isolating. charities. and they may be able to print leaflets. Just like your own group. Political organisations can help you with things like this. trade unions. especially if you are working alone or with a small group. One way in which you can gain support in many different forms is by involving local or national political organisations. posters and flyers for you free of charge or at a below-market rate.in fact any organisation that shares common goals or views with your own is a potential source of support. especially if they know representatives of other parties are going to be there too. OK they probably aren’t going to donate £1000 to your campaign but they are able to provide financial support in other ways. 110
. particularly in marginal seats (where propaganda is churned out at a far higher rate). often the party will not charge you if they see your organisation as complementary to their own. whether you’re renting a venue. These can include political parties. There’s nothing politicians like to do more than have a room full of people all listening attentively to them. So what benefits can working with these groups bring? Firstly. buying some banners or just organising a social it all costs money. If you are a small group or you are lacking material for your stall you can use partner groups within your local area to provide volunteers and printed material. mostly because they are keen to raise awareness about certain issues and see young people as a key target audience. save having another politician in the room to argue with as well. Political parties will often provide you with a speaker for free. If the advice you get from your student union is not enough why not get in touch with some local organisations. Many local political parties will have their own printing facilities. In the run up to either a local or national election parties are even keener to send representatives. youth groups. many of the people working or volunteering for these groups will have years of campaigning experience and this could prove invaluable. making the debate open to the public will entice them even more. Political parties will have offices in most constituencies and these can be used as a venue for meetings. but even larger groups & societies should make the most out of working with like-minded organisations in the community around them. and when you are running on a limited budget you need to make every penny count. perhaps you’ve never run a group or a campaign like this before and you don’t know where to start. Most student political groups are relatively small. most politically oriented organisations are always looking to expand their membership and if they think there’s a chance of recruiting some people at your fayre they’ll be more than happy to help you. At most universities the biggest single recruiting event for your organisation is the fresher’s fayre and it is important to make the most of it.
This means that people may well be willing to offer you advice and support and expect absolutely nothing back in return save the feeling that they’ve made a difference. sympathetic to the views of your student organisation. The different types of support outlined above are just a snippet of what political groups can offer. currently young people make up only a tiny percentage of the membership of the big three political parties so you can expect them to be bending over backwards to try to get you on board. many of which have active local branches . Trade unions run on a similar set-up and the larger unions have branches all over the UK. Many organisations however will just want to build links with groups like your own. they have a belief system or ideology which inspires them and they want to use that to make some small impact on the world for the better.tuc. The first step you need to take is to find some suitable local organisations to work with. even if that just means attending a few meetings or delivering some leaflets. That is to say. Simply asking the organisation to publicise your event to its own members can help fill up your venue on the night.org. Many organisations have a youth or student wing and making contact with these groups is a key source of support because they are often made up of experienced student campaigners. other organisations may be looking to help you because it is good publicity for them or because they want to publicise something to you. To build up long-term relationships with these organisations you should be prepared to meet at least some of their expectations of you. It is unlikely that you will not find a political party. to find a particular union go to the Trades Union Congress website (www. possibly with a view to holding joint events in the future. Smaller political parties are likely to have regional branches rather than constituency parties and these will be based in the larger towns and cities in your region. but why would they want to help you in the first place? Believe it or not but the vast majority of people involved in politics in one way or another are there for the right reasons.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
When it comes to organising events publicity is everything and this is where working with local organisations can really pay off. however political parties are not the only groups out there to work with and you should try to build links with other politically oriented entities. When it comes to political parties most of them will be wanting to help you because they may see you and others in your organisation as potential new members. however small.these types of organisations are able to provide really good speakers for your debates and events. Larger political parties have what are called ‘constituency parties’ and a quick internet search should retrieve some contact details for the local constituency party. providing leaflets and posters to members of that organisation’s branch is a good idea too and emailing several local groups at once also saves a great deal of time. Larger charities will have regional branches and there are many small local charities out there too. the Institute for Public Policy Research and the Fabian Society. Also look at think tanks and campaign groups like Compass.uk). Within these organisations the key people to make links with are the local branch secretaries (who will have many contacts within their own and
the youth/student officer and the campaigns officer. I have thoroughly enjoyed the activities I've been involved with so far and at the end of the 2007-08 academic years I was honoured to receive a Silver Award from the student union for my part in these activities. Finally. when dealing with political organisations work on the philosophy of ‘you don’t ask. At Portsmouth I helped to set up and chaired an umbrella organisation of politically active societies that came together to campaign on common issues. potentially. but thrives in the next academic year because even if you are leaving university by simply passing on contact details the relationship can continue to exist with your successor. By forging links with local parties we were able to put on a public hustings debate during the 2008 local elections attended by representatives of 7 different political parties. a lot to gain. I re-launched and the Portsmouth Labour Students Club and served as it's Chair for 2007-08.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change neighbouring branches). Building up a good relationship with these people will help to ensure your own student campaign or organisation not just survives. Getting students interested in and involved with politics has been the main aim of most of my activities. pooling resources and members. holding our own hustings debate there too. As a student at Portsmouth University I have been involved with many different aspects of student politics. We also campaigned in the local elections and in our own student union elections. Morys Ireland Chair of University of Portsmouth Labour Students Club 2007-08
. you don’t get.’ Don’t be afraid to ask for those thousand free leaflets or free use of a venue. you have nothing to lose and. taking the society from nothing to one of the most politically active societies in the Student’s Union.
to stop the closure of a fire station. Yet they are not only the next generation of leaders but also of workers. Student. the point is to create change. re-write speeches or re-design posters after being left standing in the rain when less then five people turned up to a rally. First. so people from across the region. what after all does Pakistani voting rights or the theft of Iraqi oil have to do with a University Fees campaign in Portsmouth or a local hospital closure? The answer is simple. So if you save the students. a call for humanitarian aid or a stand against racism. Many students have asked about the relevance of these issues. that I consume an obscene amount of tea and secondly that I’m from a strong political background. Sit at my desk and you’ll see posters and leaflets denouncing apartheid walls in Palestine. To not only focus on the abstract but to concentrate on the measurable. it could be to save a local wood. It doesn’t matter what you are campaigning for or indeed against. so the saying goes.
. Through working in a Students’ Union I have learnt one other valuable lesson. determination and the results they have achieved are inspirational.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change
Conclusion: Think Globally Act Locally
Anyone who has ever had the joy of visiting me in the midst of coordinating a campaign will be able to tell you two things. passion. The previous six chapters have aimed to provide you with the lessons I have learnt during my past few years as an activists. to think globally but to act locally. Just as we struggle with our local issues. Similarly there are campaigners who look at the bigger picture. There belief. an undeniably global success. across the nation and indeed across the world are fighting similar struggles and I see a defeat for any of those people as a defeat for us all. That empowerment should not end with the completion of your goal but should be a constant so that they in turn can lead campaigns. then you save the world. many of whom are featured in this very book. Initially leadership is an important factor but the single most important element of any campaign is empowerment. they must adopt the same mentality. organise the students to save themselves and you save the world. Here I have the audacity to suggest that he was wrong. Bertolt Brecht once said that leadership is the number one element to a campaign and everything else comes second. the important thing to keep in mind is that we are not campaigning in isolation. perhaps more importantly. For many of these lessons I am indebted to the people I have worked along side. calling for trade union rights in Columbia or supporting humanitarian missions in Burma. for it is not enough to simply understand and make others understand. The whole point of a campaign should be to empower and inspire your activists. This is the trick to successful campaigning. whilst a victory for them is a victory for us all. Many of these lessons have been learnt the hard way and many times I have been forced to retreat back to my desk to revaluate strategies. who see a problem not only in their immediate lives but in the world at large. This is how one man could establish an organisation such as Amnesty International. Or. which encourages them to promote change. are the next generation.
change. positive. not only what you are against.How To Coordinate A Campaign For Change So I ask you all. think globally yet act locally.
. Stay determined. stand up for what you are for. real. stay focused and stay truthful to your objectives and clear with your message and you will succeed in achieving the one goal of every campaigner.